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EU new citizenship grants: fewer than 1M

eumapIn 2012, there were 818,000 individuals who were given citizenship of an EU country. This was an increase of 4% over 2011.

The vast majority of these new citizens were from outside the EU (86.5% or 708,000 people) although 11.3% (92,000) already had citizenship of another EU country. The final 2.2% were people whose true origins were unknown, such as refugees whose papers had been lost.

Three-quarters, or some 613,000 people, obtained citizenships of six European countries. The UK granted the most, namely 193,900, which accounted for nearly one-quarter of all new citizens.

Germany made 115,000 citizenship awards (14% of the whole), followed by France’s 96,000 (11.7%) and Spain’s 94,000 (11.5%). Italy granted 65,000 (8%) and Sweden 50,000 (6%).

Portugal granted 21,800 new citizenships. Of these 21% were from Brazil, 15% from Cape Verde, 15% from the Ukraine and 9% from Moldova.

In Britain the largest group of new citizens was from India, making up 14.6% of those granted citizenship, followed by Pakistan (9.5%), Nigeria (4.6%) and the Philippines (4.2%).

But for the EU as a whole, the largest groups acquiring citizenship were from Morocco (mostly granted by France and Italy), Turkey (mostly by Germany), India (mostly by the UK), Ecuador (mostly by Spain) and Iraq (mostly by Sweden).

Taken together, people from these countries comprised 25% of the total number who acquired EU citizenship.

Romanians were the largest group of existing EU citizens who became citizens of another EU country, followed by Poles and Italians.

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