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Mapped: Immigration by Country, as a Percentage of the Population

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Immigration by Country, as a Percentage of the Population

Many people move countries for work, study, or family. However, they may also be displaced by climate change, conflict, or economic instability.

There were 272 million immigrants in 2020, amounting to 3.5% of the global population. Where do they end up?

This interactive map from Our World in Data highlights immigration by country, as a percentage of the total population, using data from the United Nations (UN) Populations Division.

What Is an Immigrant?

The UN defines an immigrant as someone who has been living in a country other than their country of birth for one year or longer. In addition to new citizens or residents, a variety of people fit under this definition:

  • Foreign workers
  • International students
  • Refugees

The UN also includes estimates of unauthorized immigrants living in various countries. On the flip side, tourists, temporary workers, and overseas military personnel are typically not included.

Immigration by Country Over Time

With this definition in mind, here’s a breakdown of immigration by country as a percentage of the nation’s population.

Country19902020Absolute ChangeRelative Change
Afghanistan0.47%0.37%-0.10 p.p.-20%
Albania2.01%1.70%-0.31 p.p.-16%
Algeria1.06%0.57%-0.49 p.p.-46%
American Samoa45.18%30.35%²-14.83 p.p.-33%
Andorra71.35%58.98%-12.37 p.p.-17%
Angola0.28%2.00%1.71 p.p.606%
Anguilla30.59%33.24%²2.66 p.p.9%
Antigua and Barbuda19.24%30.01%10.77 p.p.56%
Argentina5.06%5.05%>-0.01 p.p.>-1%
Armenia18.62%6.42%-12.20 p.p.-65%
Aruba22.84%34.52%²11.67 p.p.51%
Australia23.32%30.14%6.82 p.p.29%
Austria10.27%19.30%9.03 p.p.88%
Azerbaijan4.98%2.49%-2.49 p.p.-50%
Bahamas10.48%16.17%5.69 p.p.54%
Bahrain34.93%55.01%20.09 p.p.58%
Bangladesh0.85%1.28%0.43 p.p.50%
Barbados9.21%12.13%2.93 p.p.32%
Belarus12.30%11.29%-1.01 p.p.-8%
Belgium12.80%17.30%4.51 p.p.35%
Belize16.21%15.60%-0.61 p.p.-4%
Benin1.54%3.25%1.71 p.p.111%
Bhutan4.49%6.95%2.46 p.p.55%
Bolivia1.07%1.41%0.33 p.p.31%
Bosnia and Herzegovina1.25%1.10%-0.16 p.p.-12%
Botswana2.14%4.69%2.55 p.p.119%
Brazil0.54%0.51%-0.03 p.p.-5%
Brunei28.29%25.59%-2.70 p.p.-10%
Bulgaria0.24%2.65%2.41 p.p.992%
Burkina Faso3.97%3.46%-0.50 p.p.-13%
Burundi6.13%2.90%-3.23 p.p.-53%
Cambodia0.43%0.47%0.05 p.p.11%
Cameroon2.26%2.18%-0.08 p.p.-3%
Canada15.73%21.33%5.59 p.p.36%
Cape Verde2.64%2.84%0.20 p.p.7%
Central African Republic2.40%1.83%-0.56 p.p.-23%
Chad1.25%3.33%2.09 p.p.167%
Chile0.81%8.61%7.79 p.p.962%
China0.03%0.07%0.04 p.p.125%
Colombia0.32%3.75%3.43 p.p.1089%
Comoros3.42%1.44%-1.98 p.p.-58%
Congo5.49%7.02%1.53 p.p.28%
Costa Rica13.39%10.22%-3.17 p.p.-24%
Cote d'Ivoire15.23%9.72%-5.51 p.p.-36%
Croatia9.95%12.86%2.91 p.p.29%
Cuba0.33%0.03%-0.30 p.p.-92%
Cyprus5.71%15.77%10.05 p.p.176%
Czechia1.07%5.05%3.98 p.p.373%
Democratic Republic of Congo2.18%1.06%-1.11 p.p.-51%
Denmark4.58%12.39%7.81 p.p.171%
Djibouti20.70%12.12%-8.58 p.p.-41%
Dominica3.58%11.51%7.93 p.p.222%
Dominican Republic4.08%5.57%1.48 p.p.36%
Ecuador0.77%4.45%3.68 p.p.478%
Egypt0.31%0.53%0.22 p.p.72%
El Salvador0.90%0.66%-0.24 p.p.-27%
Equatorial Guinea0.65%16.44%15.78 p.p.2413%
Eritrea0.53%0.39%-0.13 p.p.-25%
Estonia24.41%15.02%-9.38 p.p.-38%
Eswatini9.12%2.83%-6.29 p.p.-69%
Ethiopia2.41%0.94%-1.47 p.p.-61%
Faeroe Islands9.01%10.96%²1.95 p.p.22%
Falkland Islands42.69%50.53%²7.84 p.p.18%
Fiji1.82%1.57%-0.25 p.p.-14%
Finland1.27%6.97%5.70 p.p.450%
France10.41%13.06%2.65 p.p.25%
French Guiana54.35%41.09%²-13.26 p.p.-24%
Gabon13.50%18.72%5.22 p.p.39%
Gambia12.36%8.92%-3.44 p.p.-28%
Georgia5.63%1.99%-3.64 p.p.-65%
Germany7.51%18.81%11.30 p.p.151%
Ghana1.12%1.53%0.42 p.p.37%
Greece6.04%12.86%6.81 p.p.113%
Greenland16.71%10.52%²-6.19 p.p.-37%
Grenada4.43%6.41%1.98 p.p.45%
Guadeloupe18.72%21.13%²2.41 p.p.13%
Guatemala2.85%0.47%-2.38 p.p.-83%
Guinea6.35%0.93%-5.43 p.p.-85%
Guinea-Bissau1.58%0.91%-0.66 p.p.-42%
Guyana0.55%3.96%3.41 p.p.619%
Haiti0.27%0.17%-0.11 p.p.-39%
Honduras5.46%0.40%-5.06 p.p.-93%
Hong Kong38.73%39.52%0.78 p.p.2%
Hungary3.35%6.05%2.70 p.p.81%
Iceland3.76%19.17%15.41 p.p.410%
India0.87%0.35%-0.52 p.p.-59%
Indonesia0.26%0.13%-0.13 p.p.-49%
Iran7.61%3.33%-4.28 p.p.-56%
Iraq0.48%0.91%0.43 p.p.89%
Ireland6.49%17.64%11.15 p.p.172%
Israel36.70%22.57%-14.13 p.p.-39%
Italy2.50%10.56%8.06 p.p.322%
Jamaica0.85%0.80%-0.05 p.p.-6%
Japan0.86%2.19%1.33 p.p.154%
Jordan32.15%33.89%1.74 p.p.5%
Kazakhstan22.09%19.88%-2.21 p.p.-10%
Kenya1.26%1.95%0.70 p.p.55%
Kiribati2.99%2.62%-0.37 p.p.-12%
Kuwait51.27%72.83%21.55 p.p.42%
Kyrgyzstan14.25%3.05%-11.20 p.p.-79%
Laos0.54%0.67%0.13 p.p.25%
Latvia24.25%12.69%-11.55 p.p.-48%
Lebanon18.68%25.09%6.41 p.p.34%
Lesotho0.48%0.56%0.08 p.p.16%
Liberia4.58%1.74%-2.84 p.p.-62%
Libya10.30%12.03%1.73 p.p.17%
Liechtenstein37.88%67.85%29.97 p.p.79%
Lithuania9.45%5.33%-4.12 p.p.-44%
Luxembourg29.81%47.62%17.81 p.p.60%
Madagascar0.21%0.13%-0.08 p.p.-38%
Malawi11.99%1.00%-10.99 p.p.-92%
Malaysia3.86%10.74%6.88 p.p.178%
Maldives3.89%12.96%9.07 p.p.233%
Mali1.90%2.40%0.50 p.p.26%
Malta4.17%25.99%21.83 p.p.524%
Marshall Islands2.45%5.57%3.12 p.p.127%
Martinique10.77%16.75%²5.98 p.p.55%
Mauritania5.49%3.92%-1.57 p.p.-29%
Mauritius0.34%2.27%1.93 p.p.564%
Mexico0.83%0.93%0.10 p.p.12%
Moldova12.46%2.59%-9.88 p.p.-79%
Monaco69.17%67.78%-1.39 p.p.-2%
Mongolia0.31%0.65%0.34 p.p.111%
Montenegro12.58%¹11.30%-1.27 p.p.-10%
Montserrat18.76%21.79%²3.03 p.p.16%
Morocco0.22%0.28%0.06 p.p.25%
Mozambique0.94%1.08%0.14 p.p.15%
Myanmar0.32%0.14%-0.18 p.p.-56%
Namibia8.42%4.30%-4.11 p.p.-49%
Nauru29.61%20.32%-9.30 p.p.-31%
Nepal2.27%1.67%-0.60 p.p.-26%
Netherlands7.90%13.76%5.86 p.p.74%
New Caledonia22.20%25.45%²3.25 p.p.15%
New Zealand15.24%28.65%13.41 p.p.88%
Nicaragua0.99%0.64%-0.35 p.p.-36%
Niger1.44%1.44%>-0.01 p.p.>-1%
Nigeria0.48%0.64%0.16 p.p.32%
North Korea0.17%0.19%0.02 p.p.14%
North Macedonia4.77%6.30%1.54 p.p.32%
Norway4.53%15.72%11.19 p.p.247%
Oman16.78%46.47%29.69 p.p.177%
Pakistan5.77%1.48%-4.28 p.p.-74%
Palau18.59%28.12%9.53 p.p.51%
Palestine13.72%5.35%-8.37 p.p.-61%
Panama2.54%7.26%4.72 p.p.186%
Papua New Guinea0.73%0.35%-0.38 p.p.-52%
Paraguay4.64%2.38%-2.26 p.p.-49%
Peru0.26%3.71%3.46 p.p.1345%
Philip.p.ines0.25%0.21%-0.04 p.p.-17%
Poland2.97%2.16%-0.81 p.p.-27%
Portugal4.40%9.83%5.42 p.p.123%
Puerto Rico9.12%7.59%²-1.53 p.p.-17%
Qatar65.04%77.27%12.23 p.p.19%
Reunion9.47%14.39%²4.91 p.p.52%
Romania0.58%3.67%3.09 p.p.534%
Russia7.81%7.97%0.16 p.p.2%
Rwanda2.19%3.97%1.77 p.p.81%
Saint Kitts and Nevis7.97%14.52%6.55 p.p.82%
Saint Lucia3.84%4.54%0.70 p.p.18%
Saint Pierre and Miquelon19.69%19.14%²-0.55 p.p.-3%
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines3.69%4.27%0.58 p.p.16%
Samoa2.06%2.03%-0.03 p.p.-2%
San Marino13.72%16.33%2.61 p.p.19%
Sao Tome and Principe4.68%0.98%-3.71 p.p.-79%
Saudi Arabia30.79%38.65%7.86 p.p.26%
Senegal3.59%1.64%-1.95 p.p.-54%
Serbia1.04%9.42%8.38 p.p.803%
Seychelles5.27%13.27%8.00 p.p.152%
Sierra Leone5.14%0.67%-4.47 p.p.-87%
Singapore24.14%43.14%19.00 p.p.79%
Slovakia0.78%3.61%2.83 p.p.362%
Slovenia8.88%13.37%4.50 p.p.51%
Solomon Islands1.35%0.37%-0.99 p.p.-73%
Somalia6.62%0.37%-6.25 p.p.-94%
South Africa3.16%4.82%1.66 p.p.52%
South Korea0.10%3.37%3.27 p.p.3238%
South Sudan2.43%¹7.88%5.46 p.p.225%
Spain2.10%14.63%12.54 p.p.598%
Sri Lanka0.24%0.19%-0.05 p.p.-22%
Sudan6.96%3.15%-3.82 p.p.-55%
Suriname4.46%8.15%3.68 p.p.83%
Sweden9.21%19.84%10.63 p.p.116%
Switzerland20.93%28.79%7.86 p.p.38%
Syria5.74%4.96%-0.77 p.p.-13%
Tajikistan8.12%2.89%-5.22 p.p.-64%
Tanzania2.28%0.71%-1.56 p.p.-69%
Thailand0.94%5.20%4.27 p.p.457%
Togo2.25%3.38%1.13 p.p.50%
Tonga3.06%3.54%0.48 p.p.16%
Trinidad and Tobago4.15%5.63%1.49 p.p.36%
Tunisia0.46%0.51%0.05 p.p.10%
Turkey2.16%7.18%5.02 p.p.233%
Turkmenistan8.32%3.23%-5.09 p.p.-61%
Tuvalu3.57%2.03%-1.54 p.p.-43%
Uganda3.14%3.76%0.63 p.p.20%
Ukraine13.39%11.43%-1.97 p.p.-15%
United Arab Emirates71.46%88.13%16.67 p.p.23%
United Kingdom6.39%13.79%7.40 p.p.116%
United States9.22%15.30%6.08 p.p.66%
Uruguay3.15%3.12%-0.04 p.p.-1%
Uzbekistan8.10%3.47%-4.63 p.p.-57%
Vanuatu1.57%1.06%-0.51 p.p.-33%
Venezuela5.22%4.66%-0.56 p.p.-11%
Vietnam0.04%0.08%0.04 p.p.93%
Western Sahara0.97%0.83%²-0.14 p.p.-15%
World2.87%3.60%0.73 p.p.25%
Yemen1.01%1.30%0.28 p.p.28%
Zambia3.48%1.02%-2.46 p.p.-71%
Zimbabwe6.08%2.80%-3.28 p.p.-54%


¹Data as of 2010 due to data availability
²Data as of 2015 due to data availability

Higher immigration levels are generally correlated with higher standards of living and advanced economies. For instance, North America, Europe, and Oceania all have a relatively high proportion of immigrants.

The United States is home to the largest number of immigrants—over 50 million—which now make up 15% of the country’s population. Since 1990, the proportion of immigrants in the country has continued to rise. As with most advanced economies, immigration has helped to counter a decline in fertility rates.

Over the last 30 years, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has had the highest immigration by country, with 88% of its population being defined as immigrants in 2020. The country has the highest GDP per capita of any of its neighboring countries, and draws many migrant workers.

Meanwhile, South Korea has seen the largest relative increase in immigrants over the last three decades. Faced with the lowest fertility rate in the world and an aging population, the country has enacted policy reforms to encourage immigration, including a formal guest worker program and local voting rights for permanent foreign residents.

Integration or Separation?

Immigrants can help fill labor gaps and drive economic innovation in their new country of residence. Depending on their destination, they may benefit from things like higher pay, access to better education, and a more stable political climate.

Notably, countries respond to immigration in different ways. In one study measuring what governments are doing to integrate migrants, Sweden ranked at the top. The country offers non-EU citizens equal access to education, labor market rights and its social safety net, and it also has strong anti-discrimination laws.

On the flip side, immigrants may face challenges integrating into other countries. For instance, the UAE’s kafala (sponsorship) system is structured so that employment visas are granted by local individuals or companies rather than the state. This gives employers enhanced power over their workers, and in the past it has resulted in alleged human rights abuses.

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This article was published as a part of Visual Capitalist's Creator Program, which features data-driven visuals from some of our favorite Creators around the world.

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Countries

Mapped: The Population of China and India in Perspective

We compare the populations of India and China to other top countries and regions for a unique perspective on the world’s demographics.

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The Population of China and India in Perspective

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

China and India, the world’s two most populous countries, each boast populations exceeding 1.4 billion people.

To put this into perspective, we visualized populations of China and India beside other leading countries and regions. All figures are for 2023, and were accessed via Worldometer.

Data and Key Takeaways

All of the data we used to create this graphic is listed in the table below.

Country / RegionPopulation (2023)
🌍 Africa1,460,481,772
🇮🇳 India1,428,627,663
🇨🇳 China1,425,671,352
🌎 Latin America & the Caribbean664,997,121
🇪🇺🇬🇧 EU plus UK516,659,018
🇺🇸 U.S.339,996,563
🇮🇩 Indonesia277,534,122

From these figures, we can see that the entire population of Africa (currently the fastest growing region in the world) barely surpasses that of China and India.

The populations of China and India are each more than double the size of Latin America and the Caribbean, and nearly triple that of the European Union (including the UK).

Fast Facts on Global Population

Here are some important figures to know regarding the world’s population:

  • China accounts for 17.7% of the world’s population, while India represents a slightly larger 17.8% share.
  • Africa is the fastest growing region in the world, with annual growth of about 2.4%.
  • Europe is the only region in the world that is shrinking, at about -0.17% annually.

Learn More About Demographics from Visual Capitalist

If you enjoy graphics like these, be sure to check out Population Projections: The World’s 6 Largest Countries in 2075.

It reveals a startling contrast between the trajectories of China and India, with the latter peaking at 1.7 billion in the mid-2060s.

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