The Romanian diaspora is the ethnically Romanian population outside Romania and Moldova. The concept does not usually include the ethnic Romanians who live as natives in nearby states, chiefly those Romanians who live in Ukraine and Serbia. Therefore, the number of all Romanians abroad is estimated at about 4–12 million people, depending on one's definition of the term "Romanian" as well as the inclusion/exclusion of ethnic Romanians living in nearby countries where they are indigenous. The definition of "who is a Romanian?" may range from rigorous conservative estimates based on self-identification and official statistics to estimates that include people of Romanian ancestry born in their respective countries as well as people born to ethnic-minorities from Romania.

In 2006, the Romanian diaspora was estimated at about 8 million people by the president of Romania, Traian Băsescu, most of them living in the former USSR, Western Europe (esp. Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, and France), North America, South America and Australia.[1] It is unclear if Băsescu included the indigenous Romanians living in the immediate surroundings of the Romanian state such as those in Moldova, Ukraine or Serbia.

In December 2013, Cristian David, the government minister for the Department of Romanians Everywhere, declared that a new reality illustrates that between 6–8 million Romanians live outside Romania's borders. This includes 2–3 million indigenous Romanians living in neighbouring states such as Ukraine, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria, the Balkans and especially the Republic of Moldova. The number also includes circa 2.7–3.5 million Romanians in Western Europe.[2]

Below is a list of self-declared ethnic Romanians in the countries where they live, excluding those who live in Romania and Moldova but including those who live in Ukraine (including Chernivtsi Oblast), Serbia (including Vlachs), Hungary and Bulgaria. The numbers are based on official statistical data in the respective states where such Romanians reside or – wherever such data is unavailable – based on official estimates made by the Romanian department for Romanians abroad (figures for Spain, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Sweden, Portugal and Turkey are for Romanian citizens, and may include individuals of any ethnicity). Ethnic Romanians are primarily present in Europe and North America. However, there are ethnic Romanians in Turkey, both in the Asian and European parts of the country, descendants of Wallachian settlers invited by the Ottoman Empire from the early 14th to the late 19th centuries. Over 100,000 ethnic Romanians are living throughout Far East Russia, thousands of Romanians in villages of the Amur River valley on the Chinese side of the China–Russia border, and about 2,000 Romanian immigrants in Japan since the late 20th century.[3]

The Romanian diaspora has emerged as a powerful political force in elections since 2009.[4][5] For the 2014 presidential election, voting in the diaspora was poorly organized and resulted in protests in several major European cities. The diaspora vote played a key role in the final result.[5]

Distribution by country

Romanian diaspora inside the EU between 2008 and 2012
Country Year Population Origin, notes
 Italy 2016 1,151,395[6] Immigrants (additional 142,266 Moldovans)
 Spain 2017 1,117,597[7] Immigrants (additional 16,165 Moldovans)
 Germany 2015 657,000[8] Immigrants (additional 14,815 Moldovans)[9]
 United States 2015 468,994[10] Immigrants
 United Kingdom 2015 220,000[11] Immigrants
 Israel 2014 205,600[12] Immigrants
 Canada 2011 204,625[13] Immigrants (additional 8,050 Moldovans)
 France 2013 200,000[14] Immigrants
 Brazil 200,000[15] Immigrants
 Ukraine 2001 150,989[16] Indigenous to Zakarpattia Oblast, Odessa Oblast and Chernivtsi Oblast (additional 258,619 Moldovans)
 Austria 2016 82,949[17] Immigrants, of whom 36,000 live in Vienna[18]
 Belgium 2015 65,768[19] Immigrants
 Greece 2011 46,523[20] Immigrants (additional 10,391 Moldovans). There are also 209,000 Aromanian[21] and 3,000 Megleno-Romanian[22] speaking people in Greece, however they are not considered an ethnic but a linguistic/cultural minority.
 Portugal 2014 31,505[23] Immigrants (additional 8,460 Moldovans)
 Hungary 2011 30,924[24] Indigenous to Eastern Hungary
 Serbia 2011 29,332[25] Indigenous to Vojvodina, Timočka Krajina and parts of Central Serbia (additional 35,330 Vlachs and 243 Cincars)
 Sweden 2016 27,974[26] Immigrants (additional 938 Moldovans)
 Denmark 2017 24,422[27] Immigrants (additional 686 Moldovans)
 Cyprus 2011 24,376[28] Immigrants
 Netherlands 2016 23,020[29] Immigrants (additional 324 Moldovans)
  Switzerland 2015 21,593[30] Immigrants
 Australia 2011 20,998[31] Immigrants
 Ireland 2011 17,995[32] Immigrants
 Kazakhstan 2009 14,666[33] Immigrants/Displaced during World War II (including Moldovans)
 Turkey 14,000[34] Immigrants
 Norway 2014 11,068[35] Immigrants
 Japan 10,000[36] Immigrants
 Venezuela 10,000 Immigrants
 United Arab Emirates 6,444[37] Immigrants
 Czech Republic 5,069 Immigrants
 Slovakia 4,941[38] Immigrants
 Jordan 4,000[37] Immigrants
 Russia 2010 3,201[39] Immigrants/Displaced during World War II (additional 586,122 Moldovans)
 New Zealand 3,100 Immigrants
 South Africa 3,000 Immigrants
 Luxembourg 2,527[37] Immigrants
 Qatar 2,000[37] Immigrants
 Finland 2013 1,742[14] Immigrants
 China 1,320[37] Immigrants
 Argentina 1,000[37] Immigrants
 Chile 1,000[37] Immigrants
 Bulgaria 2011 891[40] Indigenous to Vidin Province and parts of Northern Bulgaria (additional 3,684 Vlachs)
 Palestine 850[37] Immigrants
 Kuwait 696[37] Immigrants
 South Korea 634[37] Immigrants
 Mexico 600[37] Immigrants
 Ethiopia 485 Immigrants
 Egypt 420[37] Immigrants
 India 400[37] Immigrants
 Singapore 400[37] Immigrants
 Paraguay 398[37] Immigrants
 Oman 382[37] Immigrants
 Colombia 350[37] Immigrants
 Monaco 250[37] Immigrants
 Uruguay 200[37] Immigrants
 Peru 174[37] Immigrants
 Indonesia 155[37] Immigrants
 Thailand 106[37] Immigrants
 Cuba 100[37] Immigrants
 Macedonia 100[37] Immigrants (additional 9,900 Aromanians[41] and 2,100 Megleno-Romanians)[42]
 Vietnam 100[37] Immigrants
 Lithuania 2011 77[43] Immigrants
 Pakistan 75[37] Immigrants
 Latvia 2011 63[44] Immigrants (additional 1,919 Moldovans)
 Dominican Republic 30[37] Immigrants
 Liechtenstein 15[37] Immigrants
 Albania There live up to 300,000 Aromanians, but Albanian authorities do not recognize them as Romanian minority.[45]
Total 4,735,954 The estimate is the sum of the countrywide estimates listed. To this are added 1,618,650 people belonging to ethnic groups whereof most sholars consider them part of Romanian population (e.g., Moldovans, Aromanians, Megleno-Romanians). The total estimate is roughly 6.3 million.


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