More people believe immigrants are a strength rather than a burden, according to a new survey of people in 18 nations. 

Migration attitudes Pew


The 2018 Pew Research Center survey of people in the 18 countries - which host half of the world's migrants - showed that a median of 56 per cent of people across the nations where the poll took place believe immigrants make their country stronger while just 38 per cent believed immigrants were a burden on their country.

The survey found that the 10 countries where the majority of people view immigrants as a strength include some of the largest migrant receiving nations in the world. These include the US and Germany (where 59 per cent of people saw immigrants as a strength in both nations), UK (62 per cent), France (56 per cent), Canada (68 per cent) and Australia (64 per cent). Each of these nations hosted more than seven million immigrants in 2017.

In contrast, the five countries where clear majorities see immigrants as a burden - Hungary, Greece, South Africa, Russia and Israel - each host less than five million migrants.

Opinion was divided in The Netherlands (50 per cent see immigrants as a strength, 42 per cent as a burden) while in Italy and Poland, the majority saw immigrants as a burden but large percentages of people in both countries didn't lean one way or the other.

Interestingly, the survey found that since Europe's migration crisis of 2015, the share of adults who say immigrants make their countries stronger in Greece, Germany and Italy - three countries that bore the brunt of the crisis, have dropped significantly.

Elsewhere, the survey found that a median of 50 per cent of people across the 18 nations found immigrants were "no more to blame for crime than other groups" while 37 per cent said they were.