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October 18, 2022

38% of International Students in 2011 Stayed in Germany After

Over one-third of international students that obtained a residence permit for study purposes between 2006 and 2021 have remained in Germany, applying either for an employment permit or for family reasons.

According to Destatis, the Federal  Statistical Office, 612,000 international students from third countries were living in Germany between 2016 and 2021 with a residence permit issued for studies, with 184,200 of these being recorded in 2006 and 2011, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports. 

The Central Register of Foreigners reveals that 48 per cent of these students remained in Germany after five years of finishing their studies and 38 per cent after ten years. These rates list Germany among the top countries in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. 

Chinese international students represent the main nationality in Germany as 36,000 were recorded between 2006 and 2011, with 29 per cent of them living in the country after ten years. American students follow (13,000 students), with 14 per cent of them remaining in Germany after ten years. The same goes for  Russian citizens; from 12,000 of them, 47 per cent remained in the country after ten years, and 28 per cent of 10,000 Turkish students. 

After a decade, 28 per cent of the former international students still living in Germany had obtained German citizenship. However, there are differences in naturalization rates between the nationality groups.

“Although the proportion of people naturalised after ten years was below average among Turkish students (24 per cent), it was higher than among international students with Russian (12 per cent), Chinese (ten per cent) and American (three percent) citizenship,” Destatis explains. 

However, higher proportions of naturalised people were witnessed from Cameroonian students (50 per cent), Brazilian (34 per cent), and Indian (32 per cent) students. 

While the majority of international students either decided to become German citizens or applied for a residence permit for employment purposes, another group of them stayed in the country for family matters. About 21 per cent of international students sought residence permits for family reasons, with those rates being exceptionally higher for Russian students (38 per cent).

From a total of 70,385 students, 31.8 per cent of those obtained residence permits for work purposes, followed by naturalization (28.1 per cent), family reasons (20.6 per cent), studies (12.1 per cent) and 4.2 per cent are enjoying the benefit of freedom of movement under EU law. 

Chinese international students mainly obtained a work residence permit, while Russians got residence permits for family matters, and Turks had higher naturalization rates. As per Americans, the majority of those are staying in Germany with a residence permit issued for study purposes.