Ukrainians received the most first residence permits in the EU in 2017
In 2017, citizens of Ukraine continued to receive the highest number of residence permits in EU Member States of any non-EU country. 662 thousand Ukrainians received residence permits. According to Eurostat, most (88%) of the permits were issued in Poland.
Ukrainians benefited from residence permits mainly for employment reasons (88% of the first residence permits issued to Ukrainians in 2017). Ukraine came top of the list ahead of citizens of Syria (223,000 permits, of which almost two-thirds were issued in Germany) and China, including Hong Kong (193,000, of which almost half were in the United Kingdom).
In 2017, about 3.1 million first residence permits were issued in the EU to non-EU citizens. The number increased by almost 4% (or 112,000) compared with 2016. Employment reasons accounted for almost a third (32%) of all first residence permits issued in the EU in 2017, family reasons for 26%, education reasons for 17%, and other reasons, including international protection, for 24%.