Immigrant population in Germany

Germany is the 2nd most popular migration destination in the world, after the U.S. Of all the 27 EU states, Germany has the second-highest percentage of immigrants in its population after the United Kingdom. By United Nations estimates, as of 2017, 12,165,083 people living in Germany are immigrants or about 14.8% of the German population.

According to the Federal Statistical Office of Germany in 2017, the most people without German citizenship were Turkish (1.48 million), followed by Polish (0.87 million), Syria (0.70 million), Italy (0.64 million), and Romania citizens (0.62 million).

The map below shows the nation of citizenship for the biggest group of newcomers by German division.

The most common immigrant citizenship in each German district

The region with the largest immigrant citizens is Offenbach am Main at 28.6 percent, whereas Nordvorpommern has the largest number at just 0.6 percent.

Turks, Italians, Portuguese, Greeks (who are not the leading minority in any division) and others immigrated in large amounts to West Germany as guest workers to provide an additional workforce to the then-thriving economy. Turks make up by far the biggest group with over 1.5 million existing in Germany.

In the east, the number of immigrants is generally lower, in many rural eastern regions, the percentage is under 2%, or even under 1%.

The most common groups of resident foreign nationals in Germany
RankNationalityPopulation% of foreign nationals
1 Turkey1,483,51514.9
2 Poland866.8558.2
3 Syria698.956.6
4 Italy643.0656.1
5 Romania622.785.9
6 Croatia367.93.5
7 Greece362.2453.4
8 Bulgaria310.4152.9
9 Afghanistan251.642.4
10 Russia249.2052.3
11 Iraq237.3652.2
12 Serbia225.5352.1
13 Hungary207.0251.9
14 Austria191.3051.8
15 Bosnia and Herzegovina180.951.7
16 Netherlands154.631.5
17 Spain178.011.7
18 Ukraine138.0451.3
19 France149.0251.4
20 Portugal146.811.4
21 China136.461.3
23 United States117.731.1
24 United Kingdom116.4651.1
25 India108.9651.0
26 Iran & Kurdistan Province102.761.0
27 Macedonia99.4350.9
28 Vietnam92.4850.9
29 Morocco75.620.7
30 Pakistan730.7

The most significant growth of immigrants observes in East Germany.

Change in foreign population of German states (2010 – 2017)
Change in foreign population of German states (2010 - 2017)

And in conclusion, an interesting map about the gender composition of migrants by countries of the world. Citizens from the nations shown in red come to Germany primarily to work. Residents of states colored green mainly come to Germany to get married.

Most common gender among immigrant groups in Germany
Most common gender among immigrant groups in Germany
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