Foreign-Born UAE Population Up 500% since 1990

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It is a well-known fact that the majority of people living in UAE today were born outside the country. According to a new study by PewReseach, the share of foreigners in the UAE has reached 84%. This is the highest share of foreign-born population in the world. Qatar is second with 74%, followed by Kuwait with 60% and Bahrain with 55%. In addition to that, the same research has estimated that the amount of expat population in the UAE has increased by almost 500% over the last 23 years.

According to PewReseach’s “Origins and Destinations of the World’s Migrants” report, between 1990 and 2013 the foreign-born population of the United Arab Emirates has jumped from 1.3 million to 7.8 million. This is a growth of nearly 500%. Also, the rise of expats follows an upward tendency. The number of immigrants in the UAE between 1990 and 2000 is reported to have increase by 1.14 million. However, over the next one decade, between 2000 and 2010, the foreign-born population of the United Arab Emirates jumped by another 4.88 million.

In 2013, most of the immigrants in the UAE originated from India (2.85 million), followed by expats from Bangladesh (1.09 million) and Pakistan (950,000). In comparison, the top choice of immigrants moving out of the United Arab Emirates was Kuwait. France, Qatar, India and Canada were also listed by the report in the top five.

Immigrants moving into the UAE by origin in 2013:

  • India (2.85 million)
  • Bangladesh (1.09 million)
  • Pakistan (950,000)
  • Egypt (710,000)
  • Philippines (480,000)

The report also lists a number of interesting world migration facts. According to it, the U.K. has the most diverse community of immigrants in the world. In addition, it was found that there are French immigrants in almost every country you can think of. Still, the top choice of French expats is Spain and the United States. Speaking of the U.S., this Northern American country has the highest number of foreign-born residents – 46 million. India, on the other hand, has greatest number of people who have moved out the country – 14 million. However, just a decade ago Indian immigrants were estimated at 7 million.

According to PewResearch, the most common reason for people to migrate out of their country is better job opportunities. Nevertheless, the study points out that the population of some countries is so poor that they are not even able to afford to travel abroad. Among them are the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic and Niger. There, the percentage of people who have relocated to a foreign country is lower than 3%.

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