Global Poll Shows the World is divided on Immigration

Global Poll Shows the World is divided on Immigration
2016-02-24 - Press Release (Switzerland)

WIN/Gallup International, the world’s leading association in market research and polling, has published its 39th Annual Survey exploring the outlook, expectations, views and beliefs of 68 595 people from 69 countries across the globe. The poll shows that of the 69 countries, popular opinion in 42 countries is opposed to immigration, while it is favourable in 27 countries.


(full Global and Regional press releases below)

When asked ‘Generally speaking do you think the immigration of foreign workers is a good thing or a bad thing for your country?’ 57% of the world’s population believe it is a good thing against 32% believing it is a bad thing. The net support score of 25% is equal to the % of people that believe it is a good thing minus the % of people that believe it is a bad thing.  


Globalization and the possibilities of travel and relocation divide the world into three groups of countries: the Poor countries where the majority supports immigration, the Middle and Upper Income countries where the majority is in opposition to immigration and the Rich whose majorities are divided between supporting and opposing nations. Among the 18 Poor countries, where the average per capita annual income is less than 10,000 USD, the majority is opposed in only 3 of them. Among the Middle and Upper Income countries, that have an average annual per capita income of between 10,000 USD and 35,000 USD, the views held by the majorities are exactly the opposite: only 3 are in favour while 31 are opposed. Interestingly in the Rich countries with incomes above 35,000 USD, the majorities are divided: In the 17 countries polled, 9 were in favour of and 8 were opposed to immigration.


Jean-Marc Leger, President of WIN/Gallup International said: “Our poll findings suggest that in a rapidly globalizing world Immigration will continue to remain a subject of controversy, debate and split opinions for a long time to come. It is a complex issue which triggers emotional chords blending economic, social and political considerations. As global pollsters we will continue to monitor and track popular opinions on the subject objectively and comprehensively across all parts of the world.”


Please click here for the full Global Press release & data


For additional insights, please review the regional press releases below:






East Asia & Oceania




Sub-Saharan Africa


For the Global methodology sheet, please click here.