People from Morocco became citizens of European Union member states more than people from any other country in 2017 — accounting for 8% of new citizens, data from Eurostat, the EU's statistical office showed.
More than 825,000 people acquired citizenship in a member state of the EU in 2017, which was a decrease of 17% compared to 2016. In 2016, EU member states granted roughly 994,799 new citizenships.
Spain gave 84,400 fewer people citizenship compared with 2016, accounting for the largest decrease in new citizenships at the EU level.
A quarter of people acquiring citizenship were Moroccans, Albanians, Indians, Turks, and Pakistanis, Eurostat said.
UK citizens acquired a much higher number of EU citizenships in 2017 than in 2016 — 14,911 in 2017 up from just over 6,500 in 2016.
Italy granted the most citizenships followed by the United Kingdom, Germany and France. Moroccans were mostly granted citizenship in Italy, Spain, and France.
Albanians, who accounted for 7% of newly granted EU citizenships, were mostly new citizens in Greece and Italy.
The top three countries with people who received EU citizenship were Morocco, Albania and India.
In France, Moroccans, Algerians and Tunisians were granted the most citizenships. In Germany, Turks, Brits, and Polish were granted the most citizenships.
The UK gained new citizenship mostly to people from India, Pakistan, and Poland. Poland granted the most citizenships to people from Ukraine, Belarus and Russia. Italy gained new citizens in 2017 mostly from Albania, Morocco, and Brazil.
The dataset, which was originally released in March, is part of a new Eurostat publication called "People on the move" that looks at mobility in Europe including where people live, emigration, and travel among other statistics.