Canada welcomes immigrants; tops list in a study

by Kumar Balani

Kumar Balani

NEW YORK — Canadians are the most welcoming among residents in 18 countries who were queried on whether immigrants are a burden or strength. Canada is home to 7.85 million people from overseas, ranking fifth worldwide in the number of immigrants, just below France’s 7.9 million foreigners. In a Pew Research Center poll with a wide range of pro- and anti-immigration results published last 14 March, nearly seven of 10 people in Canada responded affirmatively to this statement below: “Immigrants today make our country stronger because of their work or talents.”

A median of 56 percent of all respondents agreed that immigrants make their countries stronger. Residents of 11 of the 18 countries were on the positive side of immigration, with nearly all of them in higher-income Western nations, except Japan and Mexico. The minimum score among these 11 countries was 50 percent, by people of The Netherlands, all the way to 68 percent among Canadians expressing this feeling as well. Residents of Japan, Germany and the United States all scored the same 59 percent.

People in the other seven countries, however, agreed with this statement of the polling organization: “Immigrants today are a burden on our country because they take our jobs and social benefits.” An average six of every 10 people who posted this statement affirmed it in Israel, Russia and South Africa. But respondents in Greece and Hungary were the most opposed, affirming that immigrants are a burden and that they take their jobs and social benefits. Those opposed to immigration constituted a median of 38 percent.

A useful study for intending Filipino immigrants

For intending immigrants in the Philippines and elsewhere trying to decide which country to settle in, this is a highly useful study to look into, to get an up-to-date, real-life gauge on the attitudes of the people of a given country towards immigrants. The feelings of a country’s people can also affect your chances of getting your dream job that would be a ticket to your desired lifestyle, including recreational activities you enjoy. We have written several articles in this space on fast-growing and high-paying US jobs.

Among 18 countries surveyed, the largest population of immigrants is found in the US, with over 44 million, constituting over 13 percent of its overall population of 329 million. A distant second in rank by immigrant population is Germany with 12.17 million immigrants, making up almost 15 percent of its 82 million people.

Ten of the 18 countries surveyed are in Europe, with large numbers of immigrants and growing even larger with a constant influx of foreigners from the Middle East and Africa.

France has 7.9 million immigrants constituting 11 percent of its 69 million people. The Netherlands is host to two million or nearly 12 percent of its 17 million people. Spain is home to almost six million immigrants or nearly 13 percent of its total 46 million population.

Sweden’s 17 million immigrants are a large 17 percent of its population of nearly 10 million and the UK has a diverse cultural and geographic range of almost nine million immigrants, making up 13.4 percent of its population of 66 million people.

Canada has a lot of positives

Canada may be the country you want to live in. It has a lot of positives. Its small population of 37 million means nine times as many people live in the neighboring US. Its economy is the world’s 10th largest with $ 1.820 trillion, where the per capita gross domestic product is $48,601, 16th highest globally (2018 IMF data). By total area (land and water), it is the largest country in the western hemisphere, having 3.85 million square miles, slightly more than the US’s 3.8 million. Canada is the second largest worldwide after Russia’s 6.6 million-square-mile total area.

The 2016 Canadian census showed about 851,000 people of Filipino descent living in mainly urbanized areas. In 2011, that number was around 662,000, so the five-year cumulative growth was a high 28 percent. The most positive characteristic for you to consider Canada: its 7.85 million immigrants constitute a huge 21 percent of its total population of 37 million.

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