Germany has become a new emigration trend for Albanians, but especially those with skills. Eurostat data showed that, during the years 2017-2019, residence permits for Albanians in Germany doubled. The stock of residence permits in Germany in 2019 reached 42 thousand 600 thousand people out of about 24 thousand permits that were in 2017. 8152 residence permits were granted to Albanians in Germany in 2011. Increasing permits were driven by the new trend of asylum for economic reasons after 2015.
In 2016, about 67 thousand Albanians registered as asylum seekers in the EU, most of whom were in Germany. The Center for Economic and Social Studies in Albania in a recent survey on skills' emigration (students) has found that the new immigration trend is Germany. High level of economic and social development, employment opportunities for people with university and qualified education, high quality tertiary education, low cost of university fees, the existence of a rapidly growing Albanian community, are some of the factors that explain the shift of the curve from Italy to Germany, says Professor Ilir Gëdeshi who has been studying the features and trends of emigration for years.
According to him, this perception of Germany, as a very advanced country and that offers good social support, increased especially after the global economic crisis (2008) and the refugee crisis (2015). During 2013–2018, almost 83,000 Albanians applied for asylum in Germany (and then returned). The desire of Albanian students to study in Germany is also reflected in learning the German language. Many primary and secondary school students in Albania have started learning German in school or in private courses.
According to Eurostat, about 868 thousand residence permits have been issued for the citizens of Albania until the end of 2019 by European Union countries , ranking sixth in the world for the number of permits, after Morocco (2.0 million), Turkey (1.9 million) , Ukraine (1.3 million) and China (including Hong Kong; 1.0 million), Syria (974,000). In terms of population, the country ranked first in the world. According to Eurostat data, 48% of residence permits are issued to Albanian citizens from Italy, for a total of about 417 thousand people. In second place is Greece, with 43%, or 371 thousand people. Germany has moved into third place, with 43 thousand residence permits, or 5% of the total. In fourth place is France, with 11 thousand people, or 1.3% of the total. Other countries have issued on average less than 5,500 residence permits for Albanian citizens.