1,973 persons were granted Maltese citizenship in 2017, registering one of the largest relative increases in new citizens.
Jumping up by 32% since 2016, the new citizens are mostly composed of Russian (23.5%), Saudi (17.3%) and British (9.9%) nationals.
Malta’s cash-for-passports scheme and Brexit are most likely the main factors accounting for the increase.
In an EU context, around 825,000 persons acquired citizenship from a Member State, down from 995,000 in 2016 and 841,000 in 2015
Of the total number of persons obtaining citizenship, 17% were former citizens of another EU Member State, while the majority were non-EU citizens or stateless.
The largest group acquiring citizenship were Moroccans (67 900 persons, of whom 83% acquired citizenship of Italy, Spain or France), Albanians (58 900, 97% acquired citizenship of Greece or Italy), Indians (31 600, over 53% acquired British citizenship), and Turks (29 900, over 50% acquired German citizenship).
Romanians(25 000 persons), Poles (22 000) and Britons (15 000) were the three largest groups of EU citizens acquiring citizenship.