The urban Indian’s love for Uncle Sam’s land refuses to wane. Gallup, a research-based strategic consulting firm, has found that 10 million Indians still dream of a life in the United States of America.

India ranks third in the overall list of countries in terms of the number of people who want to migrate to the US, says a Gallup survey.

Survey findings

The survey is based on aggregated telephone and face-to-face interviews with over five lakh adults, aged 15 and older, in 154 countries from 2010 to 2012.

The 154 countries surveyed represent more than 98 per cent of the world's adult population.

“Potential migrants, who would like to move to the US, are logically the most likely to come from some of the most populous countries in the world. Roughly 10 million or more adults would like to move to the US permanently from China, Nigeria, and India,” the survey says.

Top destination

But, why is US the top destination for migrants? The survey explains that this is likely because of economic opportunities in that country and the established networks of potential migrants.

In the survey, the US once again tied with Germany in 2012 as the country with the highest leadership approval ratings in the world, but when it comes to a desired place to live permanently, no other country compares with the US.

About 13 per cent of the world's adults, or about 630 million people, say they would like to leave their country and move somewhere else permanently.

Favoured destination

For roughly 138 million people, that somewhere else would be the US, the No. 1 desired destination for potential migrants. The UK, Canada, and France also rank among the top choices for potential migrants.

However, other populous countries, such as Iran and Pakistan, do not have large groups of people who say they would like to move to the US permanently.

Approval ratings

Instead, Pakistanis most desire to relocate to Saudi Arabia and the UK and Iranians would prefer to move to Jordan or Lebanon. “This is not surprising, as Iranians and Pakistanis have some of the lowest US leadership approval ratings in the world,” the survey says.

The percentage of people in each country, who would like to move to the US permanently, is perhaps more interesting.

A staggering 37 per cent of Liberians say that they would like to relocate to the US permanently. One in four adults or more in Sierra Leone, the Dominican Republic and Haiti would also like to move to the US permanently.

The three countries with the highest percentages of people who would like to relocate to the US permanently are in Africa, seven in Central America and the Caribbean, with the remaining country, Cambodia, in Asia.

Shishir.Sinha@thehindu.co.in

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