Immigration, naturalisation rates on the rise
8 June 2006, BRUSSELS — Some 72,000 foreigners moved to Belgium in 2004, an increase on previous years, an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development study has revealed.
8 June 2006
BRUSSELS — Some 72,000 foreigners moved to Belgium in 2004, an increase on previous years, an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development study has revealed.
But the number of foreign residents has declined to 8.4 percent of the population compared with an average of 9 percent in the 1990s.
The OECD study said the decline in the number of foreign residents could be explained by the sharp rise in the number of naturalisations.
The International Migration Outlook report also said immigration to OECD countries rose in 2004, but asylum requests fell.
Between 3 and 3.5 million immigrants — including those already living in their new country on a temporary basis — became official long-term residents in OECD countries in 2004.
The OECD report said immigration rose sharply to the US (a rise of 34 percent), Italy (28) and the UK (24) during 2004. By contrast, immigration dropped sharply in Finland (minus 25 percent), Germany (minus 15) and New Zealand (minus 14).
Over the same period, the number of asylum seekers arriving in OECD countries declined by more than 20 percent, continuing a trend that has seen a 35 percent fall since 2000.
The number of temporary, seasonal, and contract workers has been increasing over the past 10 years as OECD countries continue to recruit temporary foreign workers.
Where data is available, temporary entries for employment increased by approximately 7 percent in 2004, reaching 1.5 million.
Immigration to Belgium is also rising. The largest group of new arrivals originates from neighbouring countries France and the Netherlands and to a lesser extent Germany.
Immigrants also come from Morocco, Turkey and Poland.
The immigrant groups figuring primarily in naturalisation statistics are Moroccans, Turkish, Congolese and Italian migrants.
More information can be found here.
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Belgian news