Sweden sets new immigration record in 2012

Sweden flagSweden issued nearly 110,000 resident permits over the last year, marking the highest annual amount on record. The figure, which marks a 19 percent increase from the year previously, was revealed via the latest report from the Swedish Migration Board (Migrationsverket). Officials from the agency said that the majority of the increase is comprised of refugees; the number of refugee applications processed in 2012 saw a year-on-year increase of 37 percent, according to the report.

Among all refugees, Syrians accounted for 18 percent, whilst Afghans comprised of 11 percent and Somalis accounted for about 13 percent. The majority of Syrians came in the latter half of the year, with around 4,600 of the 5,000 that were granted refuge arriving after 1 July. A total of 7,000 Syrians applications were processed during the 12-month period.

Meanwhile, those immigrating to Sweden on family-based applications accounted for the largest portion of new residents, with more than 40,000 permits issued in 2012 – marking a 27 percent increase from 2011. The highest number of applications came from India and China, Mitigation Board officials said in the report.

Meanwhile, Chinese applicants were also the largest group among students, although many also came from the United States, Turkey, India and Australia.

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