672, 300 persons acquired citizenship of one of the EU27 Member States, 3,198 of Cyprus

In 2018, around 672 300 persons acquired citizenship of one of the 27 Member States of the European Union (EU), down from 700 600 in 2017 and 843 900 in 2016, according to data issued by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

According to Eurostat, out of the total number of persons obtaining the citizenship of one of the EU Member States in 2018, 13% were former citizens of another EU Member State, while the majority were non-EU citizens or stateless.

The largest groups acquiring citizenship of an EU Member State where they lived in 2018 were citizens of:

Morocco (67 200 persons, of whom 84% acquired citizenship of Spain, Italy or France),

Albania (47 400, 97% acquired citizenship of Greece or Italy),

Turkey (28 400, 59% acquired German citizenship),

Brazil (23 100, 76% acquired citizenship of Italy or Portugal),

Romania (21 500, 51% acquired citizenship of Italy or Germany),

Algeria (18 400, 81% acquired French citizenship),

the United Kingdom (16 200, 59% acquired citizenship of Germany or France),

Syria (16 000, 66% acquired citizenship of Sweden),

Russia (15 800, 31% acquired German citizenship) and

Ukraine (15 400, 55% acquired citizenship of Germany, Poland or Italy).

Romanians (21 500 persons), Poles (13 900) and Italians (8 100) were the three largest groups of EU citizens acquiring citizenship of another EU Member State.

More specifically in Cyprus 3 198 individuals obtained the citizenship of the country (-14% less than 2017). Out of them 20.6% were from the United Kingdom , 19.6% from Russia and 11.5% from Greece.

In Greece 27 857 individuals obtained the citizenship of the country -19% less than in 2017. Out of them 86.9% came from Albania 1.4% form Ukraine and 1.3% from Russia.

The number of citizenships granted fell in 14 EU Member States in 2018, with the largest relative decrease registered in Denmark (from 7 272 in 2017 to 2 836 in 2018, or -61%) and Malta (from 1 973 to 1 044, or -47%), followed by Czechia (from 3 480 to 2 317, or -33%), Lithuania (from 187 to 130, or -30%), Finland (from 12 219 to 9 211, or -25%) and Italy (from 146 605 to 112 523, or -23%).

13 of 27 EU Member States granted citizenship to more people in 2018 than they did in 2017. The largest relative increases were recorded in Luxembourg (from 4 980 persons to 6 950 persons, or +40%), Spain (from 66 498 to 90 774, +37%), Slovenia (from 1 563 to 1 978, or +27%), Hungary (from 2 787 to 3 508, or +26%), Croatia (from 688 to 853, or +24%) and Poland (from 4 233 to 5 115, or +21%).

The naturalisation rate is the ratio of the number of persons who acquired the citizenship of a country during a year over the stock of foreign residents in the same country at the beginning of the year. In 2018, the highest naturalisation rates were registered in Sweden (7.2 citizenships granted per 100 resident foreigners), Romania (5.6) and Portugal (5.1), followed by Finland (3.7), Greece (3.4), the Netherlands (2.8) and Belgium (2.6).

At the opposite end of the scale, naturalisation rates below 1 citizenship acquisition per 100 resident foreigners were recorded in Estonia and Czechia (both 0.4), Lithuania (0.5), Denmark and Latvia (both 0.6), Austria (0.7), as well as Slovakia (1.0).

Source: Cyprus News Agency

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