4 Oct 2007 02:30 PM

New research confirms that most Britons see immigration as a threat to national identity but recognise its economic benefits

A study, carried out for broadcaster France 24 by TNS Sofres across Europe, confirms that a majority of Britons are negative about immigration, regarding it as a threat to their culture. 52% of those polled see immigration as a threat to their national identity. 56% see illegal immigration as the main source of the problem. However, the benefits of immigration are also recognised with 71% recognising how it can boost the workforce in certain sectors of the economy and 77% believe it enhances tolerance and cultural diversity.

A majority, 60%, feel that immigrants are poorly integrated in Britain, with 55% putting the blame firmly on immigrants for failing to take the necessary steps to integrate into British society.

Britons surveyed would like to see quotas in place, either by occupation, 63%, or by country of origin, 51%. Nearly half, 46% of those polled, feel that many immigrants should be returned to their country of origin.

Confidence in government immigration policy is low, with only 40% sure that they can rely on the present British Government to implement suitable immigration policies.

Alain de Pouzilhac, Chief Executive Officer, France 24, said “France 24 is seeking to open up an intelligent discussion on the issue of immigration. Its editorial style is to back up accurate news reporting with analysis, discussion and debate on complex issues such as this. The news media has a responsibility to help people and policy makers better understand, address and resolve an issue as sensitive as this one”

France 24 is launching a series of programmes relating to immigration in the the United Kingdom and the results of this research study. These can be viewed on France 24, Sky Digital Satellite channel 517 and online at www.france24.com  

For further information please contact;

Bill Gash
Consultant – Partners in Television

Telephone +44 (0)7940 178621
Email bill.gash@partnersin.tv  

Nathalie Lenfant
Communications Director – France 24

Telephone +33 (0) 173 012411
Email nlenfant@france24.com  

Note to Editors:

France 24 commissioned this five-country survey to compare attitudes towards immigration across Britain, Spain, Italy, Germany and France. Research company, TNS Sofres, carried out the study of a representative sample of 983 British adults, age 18 years or older and carried out telephone interviews in their homes.

Today, Thursday October 4th 2007, representatives of France 24 are visiting London to meet with journalists and commentators on news reporting.

About FRANCE 24 :

FRANCE 24 is the first French international news channel that offers a French perspective and sensibility on world events. FRANCE 24 broadcasts on a 24/7 basis on three channels, in French, English and Arabic, in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and on the East Coast of the United States. FRANCE 24 can be accessed by all media platforms: cable, satellite and DSL. The website www.france24.com  is available in 3 languages (English, French, and Arabic).