For the latest figures on arrivals in the Mediterranean, please visit:
2021 Arrivals and Asylum Trends
From 1 January to 31 March 2021:
- There were 65 sea arrivals to Malta
- The recognition rate – percentage of asylum decisions resulting in Refugee Status or Subsidiary Protection – is 7% of total decisions.
For recent arrivals and asylum data, covering January to March 2021, view or download our latest factsheet:
2020 Arrivals and Asylum Trends
From January to December 2020, 2,281 people were rescued at sea and disembarked in Malta. This is a 33% decrease compared to 2019 sea arrivals (3,406 sea arrivals in 2019)
The number of sea arrivals to Malta at the start of 2020 was relatively high in January and February, with 989 people being disembarked in Malta during this period. In March, 146 people were rescued and disembarked in Malta by the AFM, 66 people in April, 72 in May and 426 in June. In July and August 2020, there were 463 sea arrivals. In September, there were no sea arrivals, 94 persons disembarked in Malta in October, and there were 25 arrivals in November.
Unaccompanied children: 537 unaccompanied and separated children* reached Malta in 2020, representing 24% of all arrivals. Unaccompanied children originate mostly from Sudan (22%), Somalia (21%), Bangladesh (15%) and Eritrea (14%).
*Please note that this data is recorded before age assessment procedures have taken place.
Download our factsheet (published 27 January 2021) for more information:
2019 Arrivals and Asylum Trends
The last two years for Malta have been marked by increased arrivals by sea, with 2019 being a record year in terms of the number of people disembarked in Malta following rescue in the Central Mediterranean.
Number of persons rescued at sea and disembarked in Malta in 2019: 3,406
Top nationalities of persons disembarked in Malta: Sudan, Eritrea and Nigeria
For more information, please download our 2019 factsheet: Malta Sea Arrivals and Asylum Statistics 2019 (PDF)*
*2019 Factsheet updated on 6 May 2020 to include end-of-year asylum statistics.
Please note: While every effort has been made to ensure that all statistical information is accurately presented, for official statistics, please refer to the original sources. In Malta, these include the Immigration Police, the Office of the Refugee Commissioner, and the Minister for Home Affairs, National Security and Law Enforcement. Some numbers may be rounded off.
2018 Asylum Trends
Number of persons rescued at sea and disembarked in Malta in 2018: 1,445
Top nationalities of persons disembarked in Malta: Sudan, Eritrea and Bangladesh
Asylum applications: 2,045
Top nationalities of asylum applications: Syria, Somalia and Libya
Protection rate: Closed 51%, Refugee Status 7%, Rejected 14%, Subsidiary protection 26%, THP 2%
Top nationalities with protection: Libya, Syria and Eritrea
Arrivals to Malta from 2015 until summer 2018 were mainly regular arrivals, with disembarkations of people rescued in the Mediterranean taking place in Italy. From June 2018, frequent arrivals of people rescued at sea increased in Malta. While the majority of people remain and claim asylum in Malta, a number of those arriving were transferred to other EU countries following ad hoc agreements between EU Member States.
Archive: 2002 – 2017
Previous fact sheets:
This web page contains facts and information from the following public sources: United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), International Organisation for Migration (IOM), Malta Office of the Refugee Commissioner (RefCom), Malta Agency for the Welfare of Asylum Seekers (AWAS), Malta National Statistics Office (NSO), Malta Ministry for European Affairs, the European Commission, Eurostat, and the European Asylum Support Office (EASO).
While every effort has been made to ensure that all statistical information is accurately presented, for official statistics please refer to the original sources.
Statistics represent real time data as well as historic data.
Many numbers are rounded off, some also represent best estimates.
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