At Nearly Four Million, Immigration to Germany in 2000s Near Double 1980s Turkish Surge


Even before the Europe Migrant Crisis realised its full potential and saw millions of so-called refugees streaming into Europe, Germany welcomed millions of “non-Europeans” in the decade leading to 2015, dwarfing even the massive movement of Turks as guest workers to Germany in the 20th century.

According to figures compiled by the German Federal Institute for Population Research (BiB) and reported by Welt, between 2005 and 2015 some 3.8 million “non-Europeans” came to Germany. The migration statistics, which counted individuals from Asia, Africa, America and Oceania who registered themselves as long-term residents of Germany as opposed to mere tourists, didn’t include another four million individuals living in Germany from other European Union nations.

The 3.8 million surge in new arrives in the decade leading to 2015 was nearly twice as high as the less than two million who came in the last decade of the Cold War between 1980 and 1990, when West Germany was pursuing a deliberate policy of welcoming Turkish guest workers. Although the scheme had initially intended to see the workers return home to start new lives in Turkey with money they had saved from high German wages, in reality the majority stayed.

Today Turks are the second largest group in Germany after Germans themselves.

The makeup of migrants coming to Germany in the 21st century is not only greater in number, but more diverse. While in the 1980s the vast majority were Turkish with the next nearest being citizens from the USA, today the largest group are Syrians, followed by Turks, Americans, Chinese, Indians, Afghans, and Iraqis.

Of all the groups represented in the highest inflows, only arrivals from the United States have remained reasonably stable in the intervening 25 years. Americans, like migrants from other wealthy nations like Japan and some EU countries only live in Germany briefly for “professional reasons” before going home, according to the report.

Of European migrants to Germany, counted in a separate figure of over four million who presently live in the country, a majority of around four-fifths are from Eastern nations like Romania, Poland, Bulgaria, and Croatia.

Overall, individuals who are migrants or have a migratory background either from other EU states or the rest of the world make up one-fifth of all people living in Germany today. This figure rises to one third when only children under ten are counted, pointing toward a sharp and sudden demographic change looming that could see the face of Germany radically changed in coming decades.

Leading just to 2015, and with the official 2016 migratory figures not expected for months, these statistics do not yet include the record-breaking influx of people to Germany from the migrant crisis, which in just two years could easily have outstripped all migration to the nation in the 1980s.

The sudden surge of immigrants to Germany has not come without unrest. As reported by Breitbart London in November, global polling found that Germans had the highest level of concern about immigration and extremism of any country worldwide.

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