Wednesday 25 April 2018

Surge in Irish passport applications from UK

Brexit has led to a surge in Irish passport applications. Photo Illustration by Mark Winter/Corbis via Getty Images
Brexit has led to a surge in Irish passport applications. Photo Illustration by Mark Winter/Corbis via Getty Images
Breda Heffernan

Breda Heffernan

Brexit has led to a surge in Irish passport applications, with around a fifth of all applications last year made by Irish citizens living in Northern Ireland and Britain.

Almost half of the applications from the UK were for Irish citizens born in Ireland. However, a further 37pc were from Irish citizens born abroad to an Irish-born parent.

Meanwhile, last year the number of people successfully obtaining citizenship by descent more than doubled. The number entered onto the Foreign Births Register jumped to 17,836, up from 8,212 in 2016.

The biggest regional rise was in applications from people born in the UK, which was up 95pc. There were also significant increases in the numbers applying from the US (up 33pc) and South Africa (up 30pc).

The number of passport applications received in 2017 from applicants in Northern Ireland rose to 81,752 - a jump of almost 20pc compared with a year earlier.

There were 81,287 passport applications from people in the UK, up 28pc.

Commenting on the figures, Tánaiste and Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney said Brexit was partly responsible for the surge in passport applications.

However, he added: "While the increase in passport applications from Northern Ireland and Great Britain is undoubtedly partly linked to the ongoing process of the UK's departure from the European Union, the increase is not solely due to Brexit.

"Other factors such as increased mobility and population growth are also relevant."

Irish Independent

Business Newsletter

Read the leading stories from the world of Business.

Also in Business