Current Migration Phenomenon in Colombia

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Migratory panorama in Colombia

According to data from the DANE in Colombia, in a communiqué dated February 20, 2023, it is clear that Colombian migration has increased in recent years. In 2019, a total of 465,168 Colombians emigrated to other countries, an increase of 6.7% over the previous year. Most of the main destinations for Colombians were the United States, Spain, Ecuador and Venezuela.

As for 2020 and 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic significantly affected migration patterns worldwide. Many countries implemented travel restrictions and border closures, limiting the international mobility of people.

Economic, political and social factors that could influence the migration of Colombians can be considered. Some of these factors include the country’s economic situation, unemployment rate, insecurity, violence, educational and employment opportunities in other countries, among others.

The migration policies of different countries could have a significant impact on migration patterns.

In summary, although it is difficult to predict the behavior of the Colombian migration phenomenon, economic, political and social factors can be considered to better understand migration trends.


Migration of Colombians in recent years

Migración Colombia is the government entity responsible for regulating the entry and exit of persons into and out of Colombian territory, as well as the management of immigration procedures. In its migration control function, the entity can monitor and analyze the migration patterns of Colombian citizens.

Regarding a possible massive outflow of Colombians abroad, it is important to bear in mind that migration is a human right and a personal decision of each individual. Migración Colombia aims to ensure the safety and protection of Colombian citizens in their international travels, and therefore provides information and advice on immigration requirements and protection measures for travelers.

There are several reasons why Colombians may want to leave the country, some of the most common are:

  • Violence and security: Colombia has suffered from decades of armed violence and crime, which has led many Colombians to feel insecure in their own country. Increased violence in some areas of the country has led to an exodus of people seeking a safer place to live.
  • Lack of economic opportunities: Colombia’s economy has experienced significant growth in recent years, but there is still a large gap between the rich and the poor. Many Colombians struggle to find well-paying and stable jobs, leading them to seek opportunities elsewhere.
  • Corruption and impunity: Corruption is a serious problem in Colombia and can affect all areas of life, from politics to business. Impunity is also a common problem, which means that many people do not trust the justice system and are afraid of becoming victims of crime.
  • Politics and polarization: Politics in Colombia is often polarized and can be divisive. Many Colombians are disillusioned with the country’s politics and are looking for opportunities elsewhere.
  • Quality of life: The quality of life in Colombia can vary depending on the location and economic situation of each person. In some areas of the country, infrastructure and public services may be deficient, which can affect people’s quality of life.

Recent statistics

By 2022, 87% of Colombians who left the country did so for tourism (62.5%) and because they reside abroad (24.3%). This was revealed by

Migración Colombia, explaining the reasons for Colombians to leave the country last year and whose trend is similar to that recorded for previous years.

According to Migración Colombia, the reasons for travel indicated by Colombians in 2019 and 2022 were as follows:


Migratory Movements in Colombia.


Source: Migration Colombia.

According to the above graph, it is possible to see that there are more outflows from Colombia than inflows.

For the year 2022, there were 16,263,080 migratory flows in total, with 57% (9,314,791) corresponding to Colombians and 53% (6,948,289) to foreigners.

Colombian entries: 47% (4,383,740)

Colombian departures: 53% (4,931,051)

The majority of people leaving the country are between 18 and 29 years old, with followers between 30 and 39 years old.

In the current scenario, some Colombians who wish to leave the country do so to bet on greater personal, family and professional stability, and have within their possibilities countries such as Canada, the United States, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Australia, Malta, among others.