Where do foreign brides and grooms come from?

03/03/2003 10:00

More than 20 thousand immigrants arrived in the Netherlands in 2001 to live together or marry someone already living in the country. These partners of both native Dutch people and people with a foreign background, numbered 5.7 thousand men and 14.7 thousand women. Where do they come from?

Family formation immigration by country of birth, 2001

Largest group: Turkish and Moroccan partners

The largest group of marriage migrants are Turkish and Moroccan brides and grooms. In 2001 more than 6 thousand of them came to live with Turks and Moroccans already living in the Netherlands. They account for about thirty percent of all immigrating marriage partners. Suriname comes third as country of origin for marriage immigrants.

Family formation immigration by country of birth and sex

Foreign brides for Dutch men

Since the fall of the communist regimes in eastern Europe, more marriage partners come from the former Soviet Union than from the United States. The immigrants from the former Soviet Union (986 partners) and Poland (646) are nearly all brides coming to marry native Dutch men. This is also the case for brides from Thailand, the Philippines and Colombia, popular countries of origin for brides of Dutch men. In 2001 608 partners came from Thailand, 236 from the Philippines and 188 from Colombia.

Relatively few partners form neighbouring countries

Relatively few partners from western European countries come to the Netherlands to marry or live together with someone. In 2001 more marriage partners came from countries like Iran, Iraq, Pakistan or Sri Lanka. In recent years many refugees from these countries have arrived in the Netherlands. Apparently they want to marry someone from their own country.

Jan Latten and Han Nicolaas