Where do the emigrants go?
The most popular destination countries of Dutch emigrants have been the same for years: Belgium and Germany head the list, followed by Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Other popular destination countries are France, Australia and Turkey. Approximately one third of these emigrants are Dutch nationals with a second-generation migration background, which means they are departing for the country of birth of (one of) their parents. This applies in particular to Dutch emigrants to Turkey and Morocco, more than 80 percent of whom belong to the second generation.
Both immigration and emigration have increased significantly in recent years. In 2020 this trend reversed at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. After the introduction of various coronavirus measures in mid-March, the number of people who settled in the Netherlands from abroad halved. Emigration in April and May was also lower than in the same months in 2019. Since June 2020, immigration and emigration have increased again, but both are still clearly at a lower level than in the same periods last year.
Fewer Dutch people are emigrating
While total emigration keeps increasing, emigration of people born in the Netherlands has been declining for a number of years, bucking this trend. Every year just over 40 thousand Dutch people leave the Netherlands for other countries, but in 2019 this number dropped to 38 thousand.
Over-65s head more than average for southern European countries, especially Spain and France, presumably to enjoy their retirement there. Australia and the United Kingdom are very popular among people in their twenties; for example, they take a year off or go there for a study programme.
|Bestemming||0 to 19 yrs||20 to 29 yrs||30 to 44 yrs||45 to 64 yrs||65 yrs and over|
|Total of all countries||29.0||30.2||21.3||15.2||4.3|
The decline in the number of departing Dutch citizens continued in 2020, partly due to the coronavirus pandemic. In the first nine months of 2020, 22.5 thousand Dutch people left, more than 6 thousand fewer than in the same period the previous year. Not only departures to distant destinations such as Australia, the United States and Curaçao decreased as would be expected, countries such as Turkey, Spain and the United Kingdom in particular also welcomed far fewer Dutch people than a year earlier. On 31 January, the United Kingdom left the European Union as a result of Brexit, which may have made the country less popular.
|* provisional figures|