Athens, June 14, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Spiros Sideris
In 2014, approximately 890,000 persons acquired the citizenship of a Member State of the European Union (EU), compared to 981,000 in 2013. Since 2009, more than 5 million people in total have received citizenship of an EU Member State.
Of the total number of persons who acquired the citizenship of an EU Member State in 2014, 89% were non-EU citizens. The largest group that receiving citizenship were citizens of Morocco (92,700 persons, of which 88% acquired the citizenship of Spain, Italy or France), citizens of Albania (41,000, 96% of whom acquired the Greek or Italian nationality), Turkish citizens (37,500, 60% acquired German citizenship), Indians (35,300, almost two thirds of whom acquired the British citizenship), citizens of Ecuador (34,800, 94% acquired the Spanish nationality), Colombia (27,800, 90% acquired the Spanish citizenship) and Pakistan (25,100, 50% acquired the British nationality).
The Greek nationality received in 2014 a total of 20,913 persons, of whom 88% were Albanian citizens, 1.5% Russians and 1.1% Ukrainians.
Moroccans, Albanians, Turks, Indians, Colombians and Pakistanis together accounted for one third (33%) of the total number of persons who acquired the citizenship of an EU Member State in 2014.
Romanians (24,300 persons) and Poles (16.100) were the two largest groups of EU citizens who acquired citizenship of another Member State.
Fifteen EU Member States, at least 9 in 10 people who obtained citizenship in 2014 were non-EU citizens: Estonia (100%), Bulgaria (99%), Spain, Lithuania and Romania (all 98%) , Greece and Latvia (97%), Denmark, Portugal and Slovenia (95%), Poland (94%), Italy (93%), the UK (92%), Croatia (91 %) and France (90%).
In contrast, Luxembourg (82%), Hungary (77%) and – to a lesser extent – Malta (52%) were the only Member States where the majority of people who acquired citizenship in 2014 were citizens of another Member State EU. At EU level, 89% or almost 788,100 of the new citizens were citizens of countries outside the EU and 11% or 95,700 of another EU Member State.
Nearly 1 in 4 persons who acquired EU citizenship in 2014 became a citizen of Spain (205,900 or 23%), Italy (129,900 or 15%), UK (125,600 or 14%), Germany (110,600 or 12 %) and France (105,600 or 12%).
Compared to the total population of each Member State, the largest number of persons who acquired a citizenship per 1,000 residents was recorded in Luxembourg (5.8), Ireland (4.6), Sweden (4.5) and Spain (4.4). At EU level, 1.8 citizenships were granted per 1,000 inhabitants.