Poland issues more residence permits than any other EU country

Figures released by Eurostat show that some 502,300 permits were handed out, amounting for 22 percent of all first permits issued inside the EU. wiget from FreeImages

Figures released by Eurostat show that no other EU country issued a higher number of residence permits for employment in 2020 than Poland.

According to the statistics provider, some 502,300 permits were handed out, amounting for 22 percent of all first permits issued inside the EU.

As defined by Eurostat, a residence permit should be taken to mean “a permit valid for at least three months, issued by the authorities of a Member State, allowing a third-country national (a person who is not an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen) to legally stay on its territory”.

A first permit, meanwhile, refers to a permit issued for the first time to a person – in the event that the interval between the expiration of an old permit and the beginning of the validity period of a new permit issued for the same reason is at least six-months, then that too will be classed as a first permit.  

The news, though, has not come as a surprise with no other EU country issuing more residence permits than Poland since 2013.

Across the board, however, the number of permits issued by EU states plunged last year by 24 percent, a drop blamed squarely on Covid.

With nearly 600,000 permits given out in the preceding year, Poland led the field followed by Germany and Spain.

The newly-released data shows that 40 percent of the permits issued by the EU’s members were related to work, 28 percent concerned residency and 11 percent were for educational reasons.

Of the non-EU nationalities receiving permits, Ukrainians proved the most prominent group with over 601,000 receiving first permits, of which 81 percent of these (489,000) were issued by Poland.

Moroccans constituted the second largest group (123,000) with other half choosing Spain to settle, whilst citizens of Indian were the third (80,000).

In a statement released to the press, Eurostat said: “Among the top ten citizenships granted permits in the EU in 2020, employment was the main reason for permits issued to Ukrainians (86 per cent of all first residence permits) and Belarusians (60 per cent).

“Family was the prevailing reason for permits granted to Moroccans (53%) and education for permits issued to Chinese (36 per cent). Other reasons were predominant for Venezuelans (78 per cent) and Syrians (70 per cent).”