Shifting trends in displacement from Africa to the Middle East

GHA 2015_1.2 CT

There has been a shift in the geographic and economic contexts of displacement, necessitating changes in who is best placed to fund and deliver assistance, and in which ways. The largest number of displaced people is no longer only in Africa and lower income countries (LICs) but in the Middle East and middle-income countries (MICs). In mid-2014, displaced populations in MICs were more than three times the size of those in LICs.

This trend does not mean that the need for international assistance is reduced. Each geographic group incorporates a broad range of incomes, poverty levels, access to resources and vulnerabilities. Even in upper middle-income countries (UMICs) such as Lebanon and Jordan, national coping capacity can be overwhelmed by the numbers of refugees, requiring a coherent response from a combination of different national and international actors.

Download the data in Excel and CSV format

For more please see our Global Humanitarian Assistance (GHA) report 2015.


‘Displaced persons’ includes refugees and people in refugee-like situations, internally displaced persons (IDPs) and asylum seekers. IDP numbers include only those persons protected/assisted by UNHCR. Data is organised according to UNHCR’s definitions of country/territory of asylum. Countries are organised according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)’s Development Assistance Committee (DAC) classification of regions.


Development Initiatives based on UNHCR data