Survey: Migrants Less Keen on UK/U.S. Following Brexit, Trump Victories

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Britain’s decision to leave the EU and Donald Trump’s presidency in the U.S. have made both nations less attractive to migrants, according to InterNations’ Expat Insider survey.

The United Kingdom and the U.S. have sunk down satisfaction rankings amongst migrants on a survey of 13,000 foreigners representing 166 nationalities, with respondents seeing both nations as less friendly towards foreign people and less politically stable since last year’s referendum and presidential votes.

“We’ve definitely seen Brexit in the survey,” InterNations CEO Malte Zeeck told Business Insider UK.

Britain dropped 29 places on migrants’ overall satisfaction with life in the country, to 54th place, scoring below nations like Kazakhstan (35) and Peru (47).

Britain ranked 33rd for migrant satisfaction in 2016, when 77 per cent of respondents said they perceived the UK to be politically stable  — a figure which sunk to 47 per cent this year.

Just over half of migrants said they believe British natives have a friendly attitude towards foreigners, compared to a global average of 67 per cent, with more than a quarter claiming to have felt unwelcome in the UK due to their nationality.

Other categories in which Britain was perceived negatively by migrants in comparison with other destinations were satisfaction with the climate, quality of medical care, and the cost of housing  — demand for which research has shown has been driven largely by mass migration.

The U.S. saw its ranking drop 17 places to become 43rd in this year’s table, with migrants ranking the country’s political situation more volatile than a year ago and its citizens less friendly.

Just 36 per cent of respondents in 2017 said they have a positive opinion of the U.S.’s political stability  — down from 68 per cent a year earlier.

In 2014, when the country held the number five spot for migrant satisfaction, 84 per cent of expats rated U.S. nationals as having a “friendly attitude to foreign residents”, with only 5 per cent disagreeing.

By 2017, 68 per cent agreed Americans were welcoming, while the proportion of respondents who disagreed trebled to 15 per cent.

The survey’s top 10 destinations for migrants were Bahrain, up from 19th position last year, Costa Rica, Mexico, Taiwan, Portugal, New Zealand, Malta, Colombia, Singapore, and Spain, whilst Greece, Kuwait, Nigeria, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Italy, Ukraine, Qatar, India, and Turkey were rated the worst.


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