Most Germans not worried by influx of refugees: Poll

A volunteer distributes food to migrant children in Berlin.
A volunteer distributes food to migrant children in Berlin.REUTERS

BERLIN (REUTERS) - More than half of Germans do not feel threatened by the unprecedented influx of refugees into their country, a poll published on Friday (Sept 11) showed, although another survey revealed discontent about the way Berlin is handling the crisis.

Germany is struggling to cope with a record-breaking number of refugees and economic migrants, which Berlin expects will quadruple to around 800,000 people this year.

In a survey by pollster Infratest dimap for public broadcaster ARD, 61 per cent said they were not worried by the increasing number of refugees while 38 per cent said they felt frightened by it.

Four out of five said their daily life had not changed at all because of the immigration; only 2 per cent said their life was clearly affected by the growing number of refugees.

A similar poll on Thursday (Sept 10), by the Elabe polling agency, showed French public opinion had swung dramatically to majority support for an intake of more migrants from war zones like Syria.

Another survey, by pollster Emnid for private news channel N24, showed that a majority of Germans are not satisfied with Chancellor Angela Merkel's handling of the refugee crisis.

Roughly two out of three said the German government was doing a "rather bad" or "very bad" job, the poll showed.

Some 36 per cent said the government was not doing enough to help the refugees, while 27 per cent said Berlin was doing too much.

The poll by Infratest dimap was conducted between Sept 7 and Sept 9 and included 1,021 people.

The poll by Emnid was conducted on Sept 9 and included more than 1,000 people.

Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel has said that the refugees could help ease the skills shortage in Europe's biggest economy and that companies should start training programmes for asylum-seekers to speed up integration.