South Africa Refugee Statistics 1993-2021

Refugees are people who are recognized as refugees under the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees or its 1967 Protocol, the 1969 Organization of African Unity Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa, people recognized as refugees in accordance with the UNHCR statute, people granted refugee-like humanitarian status, and people provided temporary protection. Asylum seekers--people who have applied for asylum or refugee status and who have not yet received a decision or who are registered as asylum seekers--are excluded. Palestinian refugees are people (and their descendants) whose residence was Palestine between June 1946 and May 1948 and who lost their homes and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli conflict. Country of asylum is the country where an asylum claim was filed and granted.
  • South Africa refugee statistics for 2020 was 76,754.00, a 2.09% decline from 2019.
  • South Africa refugee statistics for 2019 was 78,395.00, a 12.2% decline from 2018.
  • South Africa refugee statistics for 2018 was 89,285.00, a 0.67% increase from 2017.
  • South Africa refugee statistics for 2017 was 88,694.00, a 2.55% decline from 2016.
Data Source: World Bank

MLA Citation:
Similar Country Ranking
Country Name Refugees Granted Asylum
Turkey 3,652,362.00
Jordan 3,009,517.00
Lebanon 1,349,955.00
Iran 800,025.00
China 303,410.00
Iraq 270,392.00
Malaysia 129,924.00
Armenia 107,930.00
Ecuador 104,652.00
Algeria 97,671.00
Thailand 96,214.00
South Africa 76,754.00
Venezuela 68,119.00
Brazil 59,147.00
Mexico 45,469.00
Serbia 26,130.00
Bulgaria 21,168.00
Russia 20,325.00
Costa Rica 9,648.00
Bosnia 5,257.00
Peru 4,327.00
Libya 4,184.00
Romania 3,631.00
Namibia 3,588.00
Belarus 2,915.00
Paraguay 1,701.00
Azerbaijan 1,582.00
Nauru 1,084.00
Colombia 997.00
Botswana 637.00
Gabon 482.00
Guatemala 462.00
Kazakhstan 445.00
North Macedonia 314.00
Cuba 232.00
Montenegro 176.00
Dominican Republic 172.00
Albania 115.00
Guyana 33.00
Jamaica 32.00
Belize 29.00
Suriname 24.00
Turkmenistan 20.00
Mauritius 20.00
Fiji 14.00
Grenada 5.00
South Africa Refugee Statistics - Historical Data
Year Refugees Granted Asylum Annual % Change
2020 76,754.00 -2.09%
2019 78,395.00 -12.20%
2018 89,285.00 0.67%
2017 88,694.00 -2.55%
2016 91,018.00 -25.17%
2015 121,635.00 8.43%
2014 112,182.00 70.03%
2013 65,976.00 1.15%
2012 65,225.00 12.65%
2011 57,899.00 0.00%
2010 57,899.00 20.69%
2009 47,972.00 10.17%
2008 43,542.00 18.54%
2007 36,732.00 4.69%
2006 35,086.00 18.07%
2005 29,716.00 7.37%
2004 27,675.00 4.23%
2003 26,552.00 13.78%
2002 23,336.00 25.50%
2001 18,594.00 23.48%
2000 15,058.00 3.57%
1999 14,539.00 73.35%
1998 8,387.00 23.05%
1997 6,816.00 -69.90%
1996 22,645.00 -77.67%
1995 101,408.00 10.35%
1994 91,894.00 -63.24%
1993 250,000.00 -63.24%