March 13, 2012

U.S. is Top Destination for World’s Migrants

42.8million

An estimated 214 million people worldwide reside in a country other than the one where they were born. The U.S. is home to more migrants than any other country — 42.8 million.

Among destination countries, the United States is in a class by itself. About one-in-five international migrants alive today (42.8 million, including unauthorized immigrants and those born in U.S. territories, such as Puerto Rico and Guam) reside in the U.S. This figure is more than three times higher than for any other country. Only Russia and Germany also exceed the 10-million mark.

In fact, the U.S. has about as many immigrants from Mexico alone (more than 12 million, including both legal and unauthorized ones) as any other country has altogether. (See a map showing destination countries for migrants).

The world’s other top 10 migrant destinations include Saudi Arabia (7.3 million foreign-born residents), Canada (7.2 million), France (6.7 million), the United Kingdom (6.5 million), Spain (6.4 million), India (5.4 million) and Ukraine (5.3 million).

As to the question of where migrants come from, no one continent or region is a majority source. (See a map). The largest single share — about a third of the 214 million migrants worldwide — is from the Asia-Pacific region. The second-largest group of migrants (about 28%) hail from Europe, largely the result of inter-country migration in Europe. Latin America and the Caribbean rank as the third-largest source of migrants (about 16%). Finally, about 10% of all international migrants come from sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East-North Africa region. Only 2% of migrants hail from North America. Read More