The latest UNHCR figures reveal the continuing upward trend for forcibly displaced people worldwide. At the end of 2020 there were 82.4 million refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced people - a new high and an increase of 2.9 million since the end of 2019. As our infographic shows, the record figure is in sharp contrast to the 42.7 million people recorded in 2012, and even as recently as the 59.2 million in 2014.
This latest increase occurred despite 2020 being a year heavily affected by Covid-19 and the related border closures and movement restrictions. As cited in the latest report, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi commented: "While the full impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on wider cross-border migration and displacement globally is not yet clear, UNHCR data shows that arrivals of new refugees and asylum-seekers were sharply down in most regions – about 1.5 million fewer people than would have been expected in non-COVID circumstances, and reflecting how many of those seeking international protection in 2020 became stranded "