According to new data published by the Czech Public Opinion Research Center (Centra pro výzkum veřejného mínění, or CVVM), 40% of Czechs think that there are too many foreigners living in the Czech Republic.
While that number may seem high – “More and more Czechs think there are too many foreigners living with us,” writes iDnes.cz – it’s worth noting that number was 57% a decade ago
The percentage of Czechs that think the number of foreigners living in the country is “adequate” now stands at a clean 50%, compared to 33% in 2009.
Unsurprisingly, 2% of Czechs answered there were “too few” foreigners permanently residing in the Czech Republic, a number that has remained roughly consistent over the past ten years.
While the number of Czechs that feel there are too many foreigners residing in the Czech Republic is up 5% over 2018, there’s a clear trend over the past decade that suggests more and more Czechs are OK with the amount of foreigners living in the country.
This year’s data was collected by the Czech Public Opinion Research Center in March from 1096 respondents over the age of 15, and included some other revealing questions about the Czech opinion of foreigners living in the Czech Republic.
More than three-quarters of Czechs (77%) said that foreigners should be allowed to stay in the country under certain conditions, while 16% said that foreigners should not be able to reside in the country under any conditions.
For most respondents (82%), studying and education was the primary reason foreigners should be allowed to live in the country. That was followed by family reunification and employment (both 61%).
Only 38% of respondents felt that foreigners should be allowed to live in the Czech Republic because they liked the country and wanted to live here. 51% felt that religious or political persecution in their home country was an acceptable reason for a foreigner to live in the Czech Republic.
Should foreigners learn Czech? A total of 74% of respondents said that foreigners should “adapt as much as possible to our habits.” 23% said that foreigners should “somewhat” adapt to the local culture in the Czech Republic.
These numbers also support a growing trend of Czech acceptance of foreigners.
Ten years ago, only 56% of respondents said that foreigners should adapt as much as possible to Czech life, while 6% said that foreigners should live entirely by their customs. That number is down to 2% according to the 2019 data.