The 25 Countries Receiving the Most U.S. Immigration Visas

The top 25 countries that receive the most immigrant visas in the United States

Although many Americans feel their country is headed in the wrong direction, that doesn’t stop foreigners from wanting to move to the United States. For many around the world, the promise of the American dream is still worth the permanent move, and hundreds of thousands of people each year apply for their immigrant visas to the United States.

The ranking uses annual data from the US State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs to visualize the countries whose citizens receive the highest number of US immigrant visas.

US immigration processes

The US immigration process is confusing at best, but it always starts with a visa. A visa, in the context of immigration, is essentially a permit to enter the country, issued to those who want to work and live in the United States. There are two categories of visas: immigrant and nonimmigrant.

Nonimmigrant visas

These visas are usually for temporary workers, but they also serve other purposes, such as basic travel for tourists from certain countries. However, even when obtained for employment purposes, nonimmigrant visas expire and do not lead to green cards or citizenship.

Examples of nonimmigrant visa categories include: members of the press, diplomatic representatives, foreign military personnel stationed in the US, athletes, and a host of other unique situations. The popular, and almost unobtainable, H-1B visas are actually nonimmigrant visas.

Immigrant visas

Immigrant visas, on the other hand, can be employment-based or family-based. The intention behind them is that they eventually lead to permanent status in the US, either through green cards or citizenship. A common example of an immigrant visa is the K-1 visa or “fiancรฉ visa” for people who marry US citizens.

Who is receiving US immigrant visas?

Last year, more than 285,000 United States immigrant visas were issued. Here’s a look at how it’s distributed every country in the world:

classification country Immigrant Visas Issued (2021)
#1 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Mexico 40,597
#2 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ China 18,501
#3 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ด Dominican Republic 17,941
#4 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญ Philippines 15,862
#5 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ซ Afghanistan 10,784
#6 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Vietnam 10,458
#7 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ India 9,275
#8 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ป El Salvador 7,813
#9 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฐ Pakistan 7,213
#10 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฉ Bangladesh 5,503
#11 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ต Nepal 5,342
#12 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡จ Ecuador 5,061
#13 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Nigeria 4,990
#14 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ด Colombia 4,785
#15 ๐Ÿ‡พ๐Ÿ‡ช Yemen 4,770
#16 ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Jamaica 4,375
#17 ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡น Haiti 3,799
#18 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Morocco 3,585
#19 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡บ Cuba 3,232
#20 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Nicaragua 3,216
#21 ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ณ Honduras 3,180
#22 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Cameroon 3,048
#23 ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Ukraine 3,019
#24 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท South Korea 2,954
#25 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ท Iran 2,802
#26 ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ด Jordan 2,785
#27 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡น Guatemala 2,717
#28 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡พ Guyana 2,650
#29 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Brazil 2,423
#30 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡น Ethiopia 2,402
#31 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฌ Egypt 2,230
#32 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ญ Ghana 2,216
#33 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ช Venezuela 2.031
#34 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Algeria 1,922
#35 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง United Kingdom 1,897
#36 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Albania 1,794
#37 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ผ Taiwan 1,775
#38 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Peru 1,772
#39 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ช Kenya 1,612
#40 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ญ Cambodia 1,586
#41 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ง Lebanon 1,543
#42 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Sierra Leone 1,481
#43 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada 1,464
#44 ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ต Japan 1,401
#45 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ท Turkey 1,361
#46 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ญ Thailand 1,221
#47 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Democratic Republic of the Congo 1,203
#48 ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บ Russia 1,154
#49 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช Germany 1,086
#50 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Armenia 992
#51 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฌ Togo 989
#52 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑ Poland 942
#53 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Ivory Coast 924
#54 ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Hong Kong SAR 838
#55 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ท Liberia 803
#56 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Sri Lanka 799
#57 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡น Trinidad and Tobago 793
#58 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡พ Belarus 787
#59 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Sudan 783
#60 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡พ Syria 757
#61 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ด Somalia 724
#62 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Indonesia 714
#63 ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ด Romania 706
#64 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Saudi Arabia 701
#65 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ช Georgia 652
#66 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ด Bolivia 642
#67 ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท France 622
#67 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น Italy 622
#69 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Moldova 611
#70 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ท Argentina 608
#71 ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆ South Africa 599
#72 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ช United Arab Emirates 598
#73 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ป Cape Verde 597
#74 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Kyrgyzstan 592
#75 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Myanmar 587
#76 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Kazakhstan 584
#77 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ถ Iraq 579
#78 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ณ Senegal 566
#79 ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ผ Zimbabwe 543
#80 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ท Costa Rica 537
#81 ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฏ Fiji 522
#82 ๐Ÿ‡ฝ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Kosovo 520
#83 ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Uzbekistan 513
#84 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia 505
#85 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ณ Guinea 500
#86 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ Bulgaria 493
#87 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Gambia 484
#88 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฐ North Macedonia 472
#89 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Israel 471
#90 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฏ Tajikistan 444
#91 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Chile 416
#92 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ผ Kuwait 412
#93 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ Spain 410
#94 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ท Eritrea 371
#95 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฆ Panama 363
#96 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ณ Mongolia 355
#97 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฏ Benin 343
#98 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡พ Malaysia 330
#99 ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ Serbia 328
#100 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Azerbaijan 308
#101 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ธ The Bahamas 303
#102 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฟ Tanzania 301
#103 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ณ Tunisia 298
#104 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡จ Saint Lucia 292
#105 ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ผ Rwanda 291
#106 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฒ Turkmenistan 284
#107 ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Uganda 281
#108 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Dominica 279
#109 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฟ Belize 278
#110 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ซ Burkina Faso 259
#111 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡พ Libya 233
#112 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฆ Bosnia and Herzegovina 231
#112 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Granada 231
#114 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช Ireland 213
#115 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฟ New Zealand 205
#116 ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ Hungary 203
#117 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Mali 196
#118 ๐Ÿ‡ถ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Qatar 190
#119 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Netherlands 182
#120 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡น Lithuania 177
#121 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ง Barbados 170
#122 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ท Greece 168
#123 ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Zambia 152
#124 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore 148
#124 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ช Montenegro 148
#126 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Antigua and Barbuda 146
#127 ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡พ Uruguay 144
#128 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ Switzerland 142
#129 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ป Latvia 131
#130 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช Sweden 123
#131 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น Portugal 120
#132 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ช Belgium 114
#133 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡จ Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 113
#134 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ช Niger 112
#135 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡พ Paraguay 111
#136 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Republic of the Congo 108
#137 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Czech Republic 105
#138 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น Austria 104
#139 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฎ Burundi 98
#140 ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ท Croatia 96
#141 ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Finland 89
#142 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฏ Djibouti 80
#142 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ณ Saint Kitts and Nevis 80
#144 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Slovakia 77
#145 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ญ Bahrain 66
#146 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ผ Malawi 65
#147 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ท Mauritania 62
#148 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฉ Chad 57
#149 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ด Angola 52
#150 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Gabon 49
#151 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช Estonia 48
#152 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ท Suriname 45
#153 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ธ South Sudan 41
#153 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ด Tonga 41
#155 ๐Ÿ‡ด๐Ÿ‡ฒ Oman 38
#156 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Madagascar 36
#156 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Denmark 36
#156 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ Iceland 36
#159 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡น Bhutan 35
#159 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฒ Bermuda 35
#161 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Slovenia 32
#162 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ Cyprus 28
#163 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด Norway 23
#164 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ซ Central African Republic 22
#165 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ผ Botswana 21
#165 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡จ Turks and Caicos Islands 21
#167 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ด Macao SAR 20
#168 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Laos 11
#168 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ซ Saint Martin 11
#168 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ฌ British Virgin Islands 11
#171 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Mozambique 10
#171 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Namibia 10
#171 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Anguilla 10
#174 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡บ Mauritius 9
#174 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Sint Maarten 9
#174 ๐Ÿ‡ผ๐Ÿ‡ธ Samoa 9
#177 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ผ Guinea Bissau 8
#177 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ต North Korea 8
#177 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ผ Curaรงao 8
#180 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡พ Cayman Islands 7
#181 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฌ Papua New Guinea 6
#182 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡น Malta 5
#182 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ผ Aruba 5
#184 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ธ Lesotho 4
#184 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ณ Brunei 4
#186 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ถ Equatorial Guinea 3
#186 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ธ Montserrat 3
#188 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Eswatini 2
#188 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ป Maldives 2
#188 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ซ French Polynesia 2
#188 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Gibraltar 2
#188 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡บ Luxembourg 2
#188 ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Federated States of Micronesia 2
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡น Sao Tome and Principe 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฑ Timor-Leste 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡จ New Caledonia 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡จ Monaco 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Christmas Island 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ญ Marshall Islands 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ผ Palau 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ง Solomon Islands 1
#194 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡บ Vanuatu 1
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Comoros 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ญ Western Sahara 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡จ Seychelles 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Andorra 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ด Faroe Islands 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Greenland 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ซ Southern and Antarctic Lands of France 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฑ Saint Barthelemy 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฒ Sant Pere and Miquelon 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ผ๐Ÿ‡ซ Wallis and Futuna 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ด British Indian Ocean Territory 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Falkland Islands 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ณ Pitcairn 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ญ Saint Helena 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ธ South Georgia and Sandwich Islands 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Liechtenstein 0
#203 Northern Ireland (DV only) 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฏ Svalbard 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฒ San Marino 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ฆ Vatican City 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡จ Cocos Islands (Keeling). 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ซ Norfolk Island 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Kiribati 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ท Nauru 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Cook Islands 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡บ Niue 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฐ Tokelau 0
#203 ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ป Tuvalu 0
total 285,069

mexican citizens received the largest number of visas to immigrate permanently to the US almost 40,600. America’s other neighbor, canadaranks 43rd, having received only 1,464 visas. china i India also tops the list, coming in at 2 and 7, respectively.

Interestingly, only one European country, Ukraine, was the first 25. In 2021, before the Russian invasion, Ukrainians obtained 3,019 visas. Some of the top visa recipient countries are marked by violence and political unrest, including Afghanistan (No. 5) and Iran (No. 25).

Looking beyond the top 25, a surprising finding is that eight North Korea citizens received immigrant visas last year. Also, some countries received only a handful of US immigrant visas, including of Luxembourg two, i Timor-Leste one

Regionally, most of the highest countries are in Asia. Here’s a breakdown:

classification region Immigrant Visas Issued (2021)
#1 asia 111,419
#2 North America 91,919
#3 Africa 35,776
#4 europe 23,972
#5 South America 20,688
#6 oceania 1,295

Finally, here is the geographic distribution of people receiving US immigrant visas.

Infographic map showing which countries receive the most US immigrant visas

The state of US immigration

About 15% of the US population is made up of immigrants, and the country is home to the highest number of total immigrants in the world, at 50.6 million.

As for how many visas are issued annually, there is a federal ceiling of 700,000, and some countries have their own specific limits on how many their citizens can receive, as imposed by the United States. Although the numbers change dramatically from year to year, they haven’t come close to breaking even in the past decade.

Below is the total of US immigrant visa issuances worldwide. In particular, they almost halved during the pandemic:

course Immigrant visas issued worldwide % of year-on-year variation
2012 482,300
2013 473.115 -1.9%
2014 467,370 -1.2%
2015 531,463 +13.7%
2016 617,752 +16.2%
2017 559,536 -9.4%
2018 533,557 -4.6%
2019 462,422 -13.3%
2020 240,526 -48.0%
2021 285,069 +18.5%

In general, whether for economic reasons, family reunification, or to escape danger, people continue to come to the United States.

In the period between 2016 and 2060, the proportion of the US population born in the US is expected to grow by 20%. Meanwhile, the proportion of the foreign-born population is expected to rise 58%.

Source

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