In January 2007, 56 percent of Finns were in favour of more immigration. This has gone down to 45 percent. In the same period, the percentage of opponents to increased immigration grew from 36 to 44.
The most negative attitudes toward taking in more immigrants are among blue-collar workers, those living in rural areas and men. The most positive attitudes are among the young, students, upper-level white collar employees, women, and residents of the Helsinki area.
Division into party affiliation shows that supporters of the Green League, the Left Alliance and the National Coalition Party are the most eager to increase immigration, whereas supporters of the True Finns are the least in favour of upping immigration.
Juhani Pehkonen of the polling agency Suomen Gallup attributes the change in attitudes to intensified public debate on the issue and prevailing economic uncertainties. He says that as there are no signs of improvement in the world economic situation, it is likely that attitudes will become tougher.
The poll is based on interviews with 1,000 Finns over the age of 15.