Just over 23,000 migrants arrived in Italy in 2018. Between 2014 and 2017, yearly arrivals were between 120,000 and 180,000.
Italy saw a 80 percent decrease in the number of migrants arriving on its shores in 2018 compared to the previous year, according to the Foundation for Initiatives and Studies on Multi-ethnicity (ISMU).
Just over 23,000 migrants arrived in Italy in 2018. From 2014 to 2017, yearly arrivals totaled between 120,000 and 180,000.
One-third of the migrants who arrived in Italy in 2018 were Tunisian and Eritrean nationals (over 5,000 and 3,300, respectively). Iraqi migrants were the third largest group with 1,744 arrivals.
Although Libya is still the main point of departure from Africa, departures from that country have significantly decreased while numbers have risen for departures from other countries, such as Tunisia. Of the migrants who reached Italy by sea in 2018, 54 percent had departed from Libya, compared to 90 percent in 2017.
Record number of unaccompanied minors
The absolute number of unaccompanied minor migrant who arrived in Italy decreased in 2018. But underage migrants made up a larger share of the arrivals, ISMU said. 15 percent of migrants who arrived in 2018 were minors. .
The share of minors among the migrant population in Italy has increased significantly over the last few years. In 2014, unaccompanied minors made up 8 percent of all migrant newcomers in Italy, while in the two subsequent years, the total reached between 13 percent and 14 percent.
Spain surpassed Italy in migrant arrivals
Meanwhile, migrant arrivals in Spain significantly increased in 2018 - both by sea (58,569) and by land (6,814). Arrivals in Spain now surpass those in Italy and even in Greece.