Top 10 Immigration Countries

ImmigrationsThese are the top ten countries with the most foreign-born immigrants living there, and where the different groups in each country came from, according to a 2013 report by the United Nations.

10. Spain

Number ten is Spain. Romanians are the biggest group in Spain. You’d think it would be Moroccans because of it’s proximity – they’re basically neighbors. But Romanians in Spain became more numerous than Moroccans around 2007. Latin American immigrants are also well-represented because of the appeal of still being able to speak Spanish. Spain – and every other country on this list – draws immigrants mainly because of its relatively strong economy, although Spain has taken a big hit after the global financial crisis led to the collapse of its housing market.

9. Australia

With almost 6.5 million immigrants Australia is number nine. There are almost three times as many Brits living in Australia as the next most prevalent group down under, the Chinese. In fact, out of all the countries in the world, Australia is home to the most British immigrants. Australia’s foreign-born population in relation to the rest of the country is pretty large, with more than 1 in 4 of its residents coming from somewhere else.

8. Canada

Number eight is Canada. Even though Canada and America share one of the longest borders in the world, there are only 317,000 Americans living north of its northern border. But Canada is home to the biggest Hong Kong community outside of Hong Kong, and to reciprocate, Hong Kong is home to the most Canadians of any city in Asia.

7. France

France and its 7.4 million immigrants is number seven on this list. Its largest immigrant group is from Algeria, which is also its only foreign-born population larger than 1 million people. Algeria was a colony of France for more than a century until it declared independence in 1962, so the ties between the two countries remain deep.

6. United Kingdom

Number six is the United Kingdom. As an island nation, its easier for the United Kingdom to regulate immigration. Just like France, the UK’s biggest source of immigrants is a former colony–in this case, India, whom Britain ruled until 1947. After Poland joined the European Union in 2004, the number of Poles coming to the United Kingdom increased sharply. The UK is now home to more Polish immigrants than any other country.

TIP: The full countries report is available at

5. UAE

A staggering 83.7% percent of the people living in the United Arab Emirates were born in another country; that’s by far the highest rate in the world. Indian, Bangladeshi, and Pakistani workers arrive by the hundreds of thousands each year to help build the UAE, as places like Dubai and Abu Dhabi experience a construction boom unlike any the world has ever seen. Saudi Arabia is right up there with Russia as the world’s biggest exporter of oil, which drives its entire economy and attracts millions of immigrants. The vast majority of migrant workers come from the Indian subcontinent, Southeast

4. Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is right up there with Russia as the world’s biggest exporter of oil, which drives its entire economy and attracts millions of immigrants. The vast majority of migrant workers come from the Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, and Africa, and are employed in the agriculture, cleaning and domestic service industries.

3. Russia

All ten of Russia’s largest immigrant groups came from countries that used to be part of the Soviet Union. They come because Russia’s economy is stronger than their own, but they’re pretty much the only ones coming. The number of people leaving Russia in 2013 stood at 186,382 – that’s more than five times as many left the country just three years earlier, in 2010.

2. Germany

Turks are the largest immigrant group in Germany, a trend that began on a wide scale during a labor shortage in the 1960’s and 1970’s in West Germany, which the government solved by striking a labor trade deal with the government of Turkey. The more than 1 million Polish immigrants in Germany makes sense because the two countries are neighbors, and – after the fall of the Soviet Union and the Berlin Wall – so does the more than 1 million Russians who were attracted to Germany – like the Poles – because of the strong German economy. In recent years, a large number of immigrants from war-torn Asian countries such as Afganistan, Irak, and Syria have contributed to Germany’s demographics with over 1 million people.

1. USA

And number one is the United States of America, with more than 45 million foreign-born residents. One in every five people in the whole world living outside of their country of birth live in the United States. That’s a big deal, and is the single-biggest reason why the Americans lead the world both economically and culturally. The nearly 13 million Mexicans living in the United States make up the single largest group of immigrants anywhere in the world. Today, Asians – which includes, and is driven by, Chinese and Indians – is the largest immigrant group in America.

Thanks for reading, share your family’s immigration story in the comments below.

Leave a Reply