Majority of Germans blame immigrants for serious societal problems

Published:  19 Dec at 6 PM
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A recent survey has shown that two-thirds of Germans believe that unchecked migration is responsible for the problems in the country, saying the numbers are an extra burden on the economy.

The survey, undertaken for the respected think-tank Bertelsmann Foundation, comes as Germany as an expat destination is on the rise. Two-thirds of respondents stated they felt that immigration from other EU member states was placing a heavy burden on the country’s social security system and schools.

According to the foundation’s Ulrich Kober, Germany is both overstating its attractions to prospective immigrants and failing to grasp the concept of welcoming migrants even although 2011 saw the highest number of arrivals in 16 years. Two-thirds of those surveyed also stated that incomers are causing conflict with German nationals.

European member states struggling with the financial crisis were responsible for a large number of emigrants heading for Germany, and the country is becoming popular with UK migrants seeking career opportunities not available at home. Less than half the respondents surveyed agreed with relaxing immigration regulations or allowing migrants to assume dual nationality.

At the present time, Germany’s birth rate is falling, with official fears of a skills shortage in the near future coming to the fore. The country’s economy is export-led, and the foundation is concerned the perceived lack of a welcome and acceptance into local communities will eventually prevent skilled workers from arriving.

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