Fewer immigrants and asylum seekers

The number of immigrants coming to Norway has not been this low since 2001. The number of asylum seekers has decreased with 50 percent since 2002.

A little more than 4000 immigrants have arrived in Norway during 2004; most of them are from Somalia and Liberia. While the mass of immigrants from Somalia is a continuance from last year, the number of people from Liberia is increasing.

«The reason for the increase from Liberia is among other things that this group come as refugees from the civil war,» said Lars Østby, researcher at Statistics Norway, to NRK Migrapolis.

The greatest decrease is the number of immigrants from Russia and Iraq. Compared to previous years, fewer have come from Iraq to Norway this year. According to Statistics Norway, this is due to the fact that it has become much more difficult to get granted family reunion.

In addition to the decrease in immigration, the number of asylum seekers has decreased. The number is now equal to the average number from the decade before 1999.

Even if fewer people have gotten residency in Norway, there is an increase of people who have gotten work permits. It is particularly workers from the new EU countries in the east that have been awarded work permits.

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