10,300 foreigners became Norwegian citizens last year

Norwegian PassportNorwegian Passport. Photo: Norway Today Media

Last year, 10,300 foreigners received Norwegian citizenship. It is less than half as many as the year before when 21,600 citizenship was granted.

17 per cent of the new citizens in 2018 come from countries in Europe, while 72 per cent come from Asian and African countries, according to new figures from Statistics Norway (Statistics Norway).

Over the last ten years, a total of 136,600 foreigners have become Norwegian citizens, so last year’s figures are somewhat below the average.

Somalis, with about 1,900 new citizenship, constituted the largest group that became Norwegian citizens in 2018. Then came Eritreans with about 1,100 and Iraqis with 600 awards.

One in three under 18 years

In 2017, 56 per cent of the new citizens were women, while the corresponding figure in 2018 was 51 per cent. Over the past 20 years, more women than men have received Norwegian citizenship.

The distribution of gender varies widely between the original countries of origin. There were more than three times more women than men among former citizens of Brazil, Ukraine and Thailand. On the other hand, Sudan and Afghanistan were two of the groups with the lowest proportion of women who received Norwegian citizenship.

About one third of the new Norwegian citizens are under the age of 18. In this age group, Somalis constitute 47 per cent of those who become Norwegian citizens, while Pakistanis make up 18 per cent.

100 countries
The new Norwegian citizens come from around a hundred different countries. Almost nine out of ten applicants were granted the application, according to the Directorate of Immigration. As a rule, you must have had seven years of legal residence in Norway before you can apply for Norwegian citizenship.

In addition to those who received Norwegian citizenship, 14,500 persons were granted a permanent residence permit. Here, Syrian citizens top the list with just over 3,000 residence permits. Eritreans are in second place with 2,400, followed by Somalis with 1,400 and Filipinos and Afghans with just over 800 residence permits each.

In order to obtain a permanent residence permit, one must have had a legal stay in Norway for at least three years, one must be able to support oneself, and one cannot have a conviction.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today