With so much attention focused on United States immigration policy, the Pew Research Center issued an update Tuesday that looks at data about African immigrants and their growing presence in the U.S.
There were 2.1 million Africans living in the U.S. in 2015, more than double the number of 881,000 who left the continent in 2000. The Pew analysis of census data said while Africans still account for just 4.8 percent of all immigrants to the U.S., that’s up dramatically in recent years, and Africans had the fastest growth rate of 41 percent between 2000 and 2013.
People from Nigeria, Ethiopia, Egypt, Ghana and Kenya accounted for half of the foreign-born African population in the U.S in 2015.
“African immigrants from the sub-Saharan region are also more likely than immigrants overall to enter the U.S. through the diversity visa program – an act passed in 1990 to encourage immigration from underrepresented nations,” the Pew report said. “This legislation was initially intended to boost the number of Europeans migrating to the U.S., but many Africans have also benefited from the initiative.”
Among asylum seekers and refugees, and notably before U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigrants from seven states, the Top 10 countries of origin for refugee arrival in the United States were Somalia and Sudan (both on Trump’s controversial banned list) along with Democratic Republic of Congo and Eritrea.
Image: Pew Research Center