Number of Immigrants in Hungary Saw a Notable Surge, Reaching Over 403,000 in 2023

Hungary has witnessed a significant surge of immigrants over the past five years, as revealed by recent statistics from the country’s National Directorate-General for Aliens Policing.

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By the end of 2023, the number of immigrants in Hungary reached 403,112, representing a notable increase from the 263,445 recorded in 2018, Schengen.News reports.

Employment, education and family reunification emerged as the main reasons for seeking residence permits in 2023. Moreover, statistics indicate a consistent increase in applications for these types of permits.

Hungary Saw a Significant Increase in Immigrants in 2022 Due to War in Ukraine

The impact of the war is reflected in the statistics, as stated in a press release issued by the European Website on Integration. In 2022, authorities received 33,273 applications for temporary protection, of which 29,847 were approved.

Meanwhile, between February 24, 2022, and December 2023, 41,049 such requests were submitted, of which 36,717 were approved. According to the European Website on Integration, the number of people with ‘tolerated’ status rose from 50 in 2020 to 1,728 in 2023.

This increase is largely due to the fact that many people fleeing Ukraine who registered for temporary protection but left Ukraine before 24 February 2022, were granted tolerated status instead of temporary protection status.

European Website on Integration

Asylum Requests Decreased by 95% Since 2019

Although the overall number of immigrants surged, authorities recorded a notable decrease in asylum application figures.

In 2019, individuals submitted 500 asylum requests, compared to only 31 applications in 2023. This 94 per cent decrease followed the implementation of the new asylum system known as the “embassy procedure in 2020, as further noted in the statement.

This procedure severely limited access to asylum and has remained in place despite an ECJ ruling in June 2023 stating that the system infringed upon migrants’ rights.

European Website on Integration

In addition to asylum claims, a significant decrease was noted in the number of recognitions.

Hungary Launched Stricter Rules for TCNs Due to Increased Migration

In March 2024, Hungary introduced several changes to the immigration law, including stricter rules to existing policies for third-country nationals.

Under these changes, guest worker residence will only be granted by law to foreigners employed by specific employers from specific countries and in particular roles.

Moreover, the guest worker permit can now be renewed for only a limited period, with a maximum total duration of three years.

According to the Hungarian authorities, such measures have been taken due to increased migration.