Press release №2127
19.12.2018
IMMIGRATION TO RUSSIA: BENEFIT OR HARM?

IN BRIEF

  • According to Russians, immigration brings about more negative consequences for Russia than the positive ones
  • Migrant’s employment in most of spheres is generally perceived in a negative way

Russians have become more loyal towards immigrants; however they still think that they bring more problems than benefits for the receiving country.

MOSCOW, December 19, 2018. Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM) presents the data of a study devoted to Russians’ views on immigration and its social consequences as well as public perceptions of migrant’s involvement in various spheres.

Russians are getting more loyal toward immigration, however they still see its negative consequences: they basically mention crime rate (51%), higher level of competition in the labor market (49%). At the same time, 48% of Russians consider that migrants fill a labor gap in low-skill and low-wage sector. A relative majority of respondents are not inclined to think that immigrants put significant pressure on social sector in the country and enrich its culture (53%, for each). Migrant’s impact on economy is also viewed quite negatively (43%). However half of Russians (50%) support the idea to attract more Russians or Russian-speaking populations while restricting the entry for other nationalities; they also support entry into Russia for young and educated individuals and restrict entry for those not capable of working or with low level of education (50%).

Migrant involvement in most of spheres is perceived rather negatively.  Generally, Russians would not like to see immigrants in local self-government (74%), law-enforcement bodies (69%), education (58%), public transport (58%), and health care (51%). Forty percent of respondents disapprove of migrant’s involvement in commerce (food markets).  Russians tend to be more loyal towards service sector (64%), public utilities (62% with “likely positively” answer), and construction (49%). Over the recent five years, respondents have become more favorable to immigrants working in local self-government (from 86 to 74%), law-enforcement bodies (from 84 to 69%), education (from 81 to 58%), health care (from 76 to 51%), food services (from 70 to 43%), and public transport (from 68 to 58%).

Russians basically welcome migrants from Belarus (25%), Ukraine (21%), Germany (16%) and Kazakhstan (15%). The least favored countries are Tajikistan (15%), Uzbekistan (14%), Ukraine (13%), the USA (11%), and China (9%).

*Index shows Russians’ perceptions of immigration. Index is based on the question “To what extent do you agree/disagree with the following statements?” The answer “likely to agree” corresponds to “0.9”; “partly agree, partly disagree” – “0.5”; “likely to disagree” - “0.1”. Index is measured in points and may vary between 10 and 90.

Index of immigration employment is based on the question: “How do you perceive migrant’s involvement in the following spheres?” Index is calculated as a difference of positive and negative opinions and varies between -100 and 100 points. The higher the index, the more positive respondents are about migrant’s involvement in a particular sphere.

The VCIOM-Sputnik survey was conducted on December 16, 2018. The survey involved 1,600 Russians aged 18 and over. The survey was telephone-based and was carried out using stratified dual-frame random sample based on a complete list of landline and mobile phone numbers operating in Russia. The data were weighted according to selection probability and social and demographic characteristics. The margin of error at a 95% confidence level does not exceed 2.5%. In addition to sampling error, minor changes in question wording and different circumstances arising during the fieldwork can introduce bias into the survey.

 

To what extent do you agree/disagree with the following statements? (closed-ended question, one answer per each position)
2005 2013 2018
IMMIGRATION IS GOOD FOR ECONOMY IN GENERAL  
Likely to agree 20 16 19
Partly agree, partly disagree 32 37 35
Likely to disagree 38 40 43
Don’t know 10 7 3
Index* 38 37 39
       
 IMMIGRANTS INCREASE CRIME RATES  
Likely to agree 63 65 51
Partly agree, partly disagree 23 23 26
Likely to disagree 10 8 19
Don’t know 3 4 3
Index* 69 71 61
       
IMMIGRANTS MAKE RUSSIA MORE OPEN TO NEW IDEAS AND CULTURES    
Likely to agree 17 15 20
Partly agree, partly disagree 31 34 24
Likely to disagree 43 45 53
Don’t know 9 5 4
Index* 35 35 35
       
MIGRANTS PUT SIGNIFICANT PRESSURE ON THE RUSSIAN SOCIAL SECTOR (EDUCATION, HEALTH CARE, ETC.)***  
Likely to agree - - 41
Partly agree, partly disagree - - 27
Likely to disagree - - 26
Don’t know - - 6
Index * - - 53
       
IMMIGRANTS PROVOKE COMPETITION IN THE LABOR MARKET AND TAKE JOBS FROM LOCAL POPULATION  
Likely to agree 60 56 49
Partly agree, partly disagree 25 27 21
Likely to disagree 12 13 28
Don’t know 3 4 2
Index* 68 65 57
       
IMMIGRANTS FIIL A LABOR GAP IN LOW-SKILL, LOW-WAGE SECTOR   
Likely to agree 50 47 48
Partly agree, partly disagree 29 34 21
Likely to disagree 17 15 28
Don’t know 4 4 3
Index * 61 61 56
       
WE NEED TO ENCOURAGE ENTRY FOR RUSSIANS AND RUSSIAN-SPEAKING POPULATION AND RESTRICT ENTRY FOR OTHER NATIONALITIES   
Likely to agree 69 58 50
Partly agree, partly disagree 20 25 24
Likely to disagree 7 11 24
Don’t know 4 5 3
Index * 73 66 59
       
WE NEED TO ENCOURAGE ENTRY INTO RUSSIA FOR YOUNG, EDUCATED CITIZENS AND RESTRICT ENTRY FOR PERSONS UNABLE TO WORK AND WITH LOW EDUCATIONAL LEVEL   
Likely to agree 57 53 50
Partly agree, partly disagree 25 29 22
Likely to disagree 12 12 25
Don’t know 6 6 4
Index* 65 63 58
***This answer option was not proposed.
How do you perceive migrant’s involvement in the following spheres?  (closed-ended question, one answer per each position)
2006 2013 2018
FOOD, CLOTHES MARKETS      
Likely positively 40 40 48
Likely negatively 54 53 40
Don’t know 7 8 11
Immigration employment index ** -14 -13 8
       
FOOD SERVICE      
Likely positively 37 24 45
Likely negatively 54 70 43
 Don’t know 9 6 12
Immigration employment index ** -17 -46 2
       
SERVICE SECTOR (DRY CLEANING, SHOE REPAIRING, ETC.)      
Likely positively 42 47 64
Likely negatively 48 44 25
Don’t know 10 9 11
Immigration employment index ** -6 3 39
       
PUBLIC TRANSPORT      
Likely positively 36 25 34
Likely negatively 53 68 58
Don’t know 11 7 8
Immigration employment index ** -17 -43 -24
       
CONSTRUCTION AND REPAIRS      
Likely positively 44 46 49
Likely negatively 47 49 41
 Don’t know 9 6 10
Immigration employment index ** -3 -3 8
       
PUBLIC UTILITIES (YARD-KEEPERS, PLUMBERS, ETC.)      
Likely positively 39 50 62
Likely negatively 49 42 29
 Don’t know 11 7 9
Immigration employment index ** -10 8 33
       
HEALTH CARE (DOCTORS, MEDICAL ATTENDANTS, NURSES)      
Likely positively 29 17 38
Likely negatively 61 76 51
Don’t know 10 7 11
Immigration employment index ** -32 -59 -13
       
EDUCATION ( (PRE-SCHOOL TEACHERS, TEACHERS)      
Likely positively 26 13 29
Likely negatively 63 81 58
 Don’t know 11 6 12
Immigration employment index ** -37 -68 -29
       
LAW ENFORCEMENT BODIES      
Likely positively 23 10 20
Likely negatively 68 84 69
 Don’t know 9 6 11
Immigration employment index ** -45 -74 -49
       
LOCAL SELF-GOVERNMENT      
Likely positively 21 9 17
Likely negatively 71 86 74
 Don’t know 8 5 10
Immigration employment index** -50 -77 -57

  

In your opinion, is the entry into Russia for people from the following countries desirable? (open-ended question, up to 5 answers, % of total  respondents, answers of at least 2% of respondents)
  Total respondents
Belarus 25
Ukraine 21
Germany 16
Kazakhstan 15
Armenia 8
Uzbekistan 8
France 8
Chine 7
USA 6
Moldavia 6
Great Britain 5
Italy 5
Japan 5
Georgia 4
Tajikistan 4
Azerbaijan 3
Spain 3
Kyrgyzstan 3
Finland 3
Bulgaria 2
India 2
Estonia 2
Korea 2
Latvia 2
Lithuania 2
Poland 2
Baltic states 2
Czech Republic 2
Sweden 2

  

In your opinion, is the entry into Russia for people from the following countries unwanted? (open-ended question, up to 5 answers, % of total  respondents, answers of at least 2% of respondents)
  Total respondents
Tajikistan 15
Uzbekistan 14
Ukraine 13
USA 11
China 9
Azerbaijan 6
Afghanistan 6
Georgia 6
Kyrgyzstan 6
Great Britain 5
Poland 5
Armenia 4
Lithuania 4
Syria 4
Turkey 4
Africa 3
Iran 3
Latvia 3
Turkmenistan 3
Estonia 3
Chechnya 2
Any Muslim state 2
Germany 2
Iraq 2
Kazakhstan 2
Pakistan 2
France 2

 

Note: Using materials from the site www.wciom.ru or wciom.com, as well as distributed by VCIOM, the reference to the source (or hyperlink for the electronic media) is obligatory!
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