Trends in Attitudes toward Foreigners in South Africa, 1997 - 2011

"This preliminary examination of attitudes toward foreigners confirms that most South Africans do not trust people from outside the country. The fact that more than one in five citizens would like the government to deport all foreigners, irrespective of their legal status, underlines the consistently high level of anti-foreigner sentiment in the country. What is more, socioeconomic factors such as levels of education and poverty are only weakly associated with the most xenophobic attitudes. While education may have some effect on abstract policy preferences, the picture becomes murkier when people are asked about foreigners being their neighbours or operating a business in their area. Except for the particularly high levels of anti-foreigner sentiment in Gauteng, which require further investigation, these attitudes are also only weakly related to geographic features."