One of every seven people in Malta is a foreigner, almost double the amount in the EU as a whole.

Eurostat revealed on Tuesday that 14 per cent of the people living in Malta are foreign, compared to just 7.8 per cent in the EU.

The situation in Luxembourg is the most extreme, with 47.8 per cent – almost half the population – being made up of foreigners, followed by Cyprus (17.3%), Austria (15.8%) and Estonia (14.9%). Malta is in fifth place.

The report gives the population in 2018 as 475,701, of which 67,145 were foreign. This represents an increase in population of 15,404 since 2017, 12,824 of whom were foreign.

Eurostat reported that half a billion people living in the EU do not have the nationality of their country of residence. Also, 1.3 million Europeans live in one country, but work in another, and 1.7 million EU students study abroad.

It also reported that the number of acquisitions of citizenship granted to people living in the EU member states increased during the period 2008 to 2017.

Fluctuating at around 800,000 between 2008 and 2012, it increased in 2013 to reach 980,000. After that it decreased again in 2014 and 2015 to reach a peak of 995,000 in 2016. In 2017, the number was down to 825,000.

Malta granted 1,973 citizenships in 2017, the bulk of them to Russians (464), followed by Saudis (342) and Britons (195).

Discover the latest figures on the mobility of people in Europe in the new digital publication "People on the move - statistics on mobility in Europe".

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