Sunday

24th Mar 2019

UK grants highest number of EU citizenships

  • A total of 810,500 people received EU citizenship in 2010 (Photo: ec.europa.eu)

Over 810,000 people were given EU citizenship in 2010, with Moroccans forming the largest group coming to the EU, followed by Turks, Ecuadorians and Indians.

With 67,000 Moroccans granted nationality, they account for top foreign groups in Belgium, France, Italy and the Netherlands.

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Turks (49,900 in total) tend to go to Germany, where they they are the top group receiving citizenship.

Ecuadorians go to Spain and Indians go to the UK, reflecting longstanding labour, historical or cultural ties.

Some member states grant citizenship predominantly to one nationality.

Sixty-five percent of Hungary's naturalised citizens come from Romania, while Albanians made up 65 percent of Greece's new citizens.

People from the former Soviet Union - with no recognised citizenship - accounted for 96 percent and 91 percent of new citizens in Latvia and Estonia.

Nigerians were the biggest group to receive citizenship in Ireland, while Portuguese topped the list in Luxembourg, Australians in Malta, Iraqis in Sweden and Ukrainians in both the Czech Republic and Poland.

In terms of numbers, the UK took on the most citizens with 195,000, followed by France (143,000), Spain (124,000) and Germany (105,000) - altogether accounting for 70 percent.

But in proportional terms, Luxembourg topped the list granting 4,300 citizenships, working out at 8.6 citizenships per 1,000 inhabitants.

Next down the scale were Sweden (3.5) and Belgium (3.2).

On average 1.6 citizenships were granted per 1,000 inhabitants in the EU in 2010.

Barroso warns of extremism in immigration debate

Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso has said the Tunisia immigration debate risks being hijacked by "populist and extremist" forces in Europe, even as Italian right-wing politicians suggested using weapons against migrants.

Europeans say they are tolerant, but oppose immigration

Europeans like to think of themselves as being liberal and tolerant, but at the same time oppose immigration, particularly from countries outside the EU, a poll carried out in Britain, France, Germany, Poland and Spain shows.

Slovakia puts squeeze on free press ahead of election

Smer, Slovakia's ruling party, wants the country's media to give politicians a right-of-reply, or face stiff fines. Advocates of a free press are alarmed, and it poses a problem for the European Commission, whose vice-president is a Smer presidential candidate.

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