Egypt Emigration and Immigration

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How to Find the Records[edit | edit source]

Online Sources[edit | edit source]

British Overseas Subjects[edit | edit source]

Finding the Town of Origin in Egypt[edit | edit source]

If you are using emigration/immigration records to find the name of your ancestors' town in Egypt, see Egypt Finding Town of Origin for additional research strategies.

Egypt Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

"Emigration" means moving out of a country. "Immigration" means moving into a country.

Emigration and immigration sources list the names of people leaving (emigrating) or arriving (immigrating) in the country. These sources may be passenger lists, permissions to emigrate, or records of passports issued. The information in these records may include the emigrants’ names, ages, occupations, destinations, and places of origin or birthplaces. Sometimes they also show family groups.

Immigration into Egypt[edit | edit source]

  • Egypt was conquered by the Ottoman Turks in 1517, after which it became a province of the Ottoman Empire.
  • The Albanian community in Egypt began with government officials and military personnel appointed in Ottoman Egypt. A substantial community would grow up later by soldiers and mercenaries who settled in the second half of the 18th century and made a name for themselves in the Ottoman struggle to expel French troops in 1798–1801.
  • In 1882, the United Kingdom invaded and occupied the country. Independence from the UK was declared in 1922. Britain had the right to station troops in Egypt for the defense of the Suez Canal, its link with the Indian Empire. Most troops were withdrawn by 1947, the rest driven out in 1951.
  • During British occupation and later control, Egypt developed into a regional commercial and trading destination. Immigrants from less stable parts of the region including Greeks, Jews and Armenians, began to flow into Egypt. The number of foreigners in the country rose from 10,000 in the 1840s to around 90,000 in the 1880s, and more than 1.5 million by the 1930s.
  • Albanian immigration to Egypt continued throughout the 19th century, and indeed into the first three decades of the 20th century. By that time Egypt experienced a massive economic development and prosperity, French and British investments (i.e. the Suez Canal), modernization, and opportunity for entrepreneurship. The economical prosperity attracted many emigrants from the Albanian lands, mainly from Korçë and Kolonjë regions. With some exceptions, most of the figures were educated members of the Orthodox community from south Albania who stationed in the vicinity of the Greek communities.[1][2][3]

Emigration From Egypt[edit | edit source]

  • Egyptian diaspora consists of citizens of Egypt abroad sharing a common culture and Egyptian Arabic language.
  • The phenomenon of Egyptians emigrating from Egypt was rare until Gamal Abdel Nasser came to power after overthrowing the monarchy in 1952. Before then, Cleland's 1936 declaration remained valid, that "Egyptians have the reputation of preferring their own soil. Few ever leave except to study or travel; and they always return... Egyptians do not emigrate".
  • Under Nasser, thousands of Egyptian professionals were dispatched across Africa and North America under Egypt's secondment policy, aiming to support host countries' development, but to also support the Egyptian regime's foreign policy aims.
  • At the same time, Egypt also experienced an outflow of Egyptian Jews, and large numbers of Egyptian Copts.
  • After Nasser's death, Egypt liberalized its emigration policy, which led to millions of Egyptians pursuing employment opportunities abroad, both in Western countries, as well as across the Arab world.
  • In the 1980s, many emigrated mainly to Iraq and Kuwait. A sizable Egyptian diaspora did not begin to form until well into the 1980s.
  • At the end of 2016, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) stated that there are 9.47 million Egyptian expatriates, where 6.23 million Egyptians live in the Arab world, 1.58 million in the Americas, 1.24 million in Europe, 340,000 in Australia and 46,000 in Africa (mostly in South Africa).
  • An estimated 4.7 million (2010) Egyptians abroad contribute actively to the development of their country through remittances (US$7.8 billion in 2009), circulation of human and social capital, as well as investment. *In 2006, approximately 70% of Egyptian migrants lived in Arab countries, 950,000 in Libya, 500,000 in Jordan, 300,000 in Kuwait and 160,000 in UAE; also Qatar lists 180,000 Egyptian residents.
  • The remaining 30% are living mostly in Europe and North America (635,000 - 1,000,000) in the United States, and (141,000 - 400,000) in Canada.
  • Europe totals 510,000, with almost half of them (210,000) living in Italy.
  • There is also a large Egyptian population of around 120,000 in Australia.
  • Generally, those who emigrate to the United States and western European countries tend to do so permanently, while Egyptians migrating to Arab countries go there with the intention of returning to Egypt and have been categorized at least partially as "temporary workers".[4]

Records of Egyptian Emigrants in Their Destination Nations[edit | edit source]

Dark thin font green pin Version 4.png One option is to look for records about the ancestor in the country of destination, the country they immigrated into. See links to Wiki articles about immigration records for major destination countries below. Additional Wiki articles for other destinations can be found at Category:Emigration and Immigration Records.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Egypt", in Wikipedia,, accessed 4 July 2021.
  2. "Albanians in Egypt", in Wikipedia,, accessed 4 July 2021.
  3. "History of Egypt", in Wikipedia,, accessed 4 July 2021.
  4. "Egyptian diaspora", in Wikipedia,, accessed 4 July 2021.