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Latest ONS figures show EU migration into the UK lowest for four years

The number of people migrating from EU countries to the UK in 2017 was the lowest on record since 2013.

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    The number of people migrating from EU countries to the UK in 2017 was the lowest on record since 2013.

    Despite this, there has been an increase in the number of non-EU nationals entering the UK according to the Office for National Statistics who have said “net migration is the highest since 2011”.

    The British Government wants to cut net migration to the tens of thousands. This comes after the recent announcement that there has been 282,000 people migrating to the UK. This data is for the year since the British public voted for Brexit and is provided by the ONS.

    Last year according to the ONS there were 101,000 net migrants from the EU and 227,000 from outside the EU.

    We saw a record number of EU citizens emigrating from the UK, with an estimated 139,000 leaving in 2017.

    EU emigration levels have not been this high since 2008 when 134,000 EU nationals left the UK.

    Highlights from the Migration Report:

    • Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia – Have all seen a fall in net migration from 42,000 prior to the referendum to just 6,000 in 2017


    • Net migration from other member states e.g. France, Germany, Italy and Spain has fell from 84,000 in 2016 to 46,000 in 2017, this figure has almost halved since the Brexit Vote


    • Bulgarians and Romanians had the joint lowest net migration figures since 2014, with an estimated 40,000 more migrated to the UK than left least year.


    Statistics for the number of EU citizens entering the UK to “look for work” has decreased from 55,000 to 37,000 year on year (2016/17). Meanwhile the number of EU Citizens coming to the UK for a definite job remained consistent.

    Immigration minister Caroline Noakes said, “What these statistics shows is that more of the people who are coming to the UK are coming for the reasons we would want – to take up a definite job or to study”.

    Even with net migration contributing towards the growing UK population, the 282,000 from 2017 is significantly smaller than the record highs recorded in 2015 and 2016.


    A year ago, 240,000 individuals from the European Union came to live in Britain. The quantity of migrants has been falling since June 2016 and is currently at the same level to mid-2014.

    In the meantime, migration of EU nationals from Britain has been increasing, at 139,000 this is the highest on record. This would appear to be a direct impact of the Brexit vote.

    Meanwhile migration from non-EU countries has risen to levels last seen in 2011. 311,000 people arrived in the UK in 2017. Suggesting that the British government may be able to take greater control of EU migration, but the challenge remains when trying to achieve the correct levels of immigration from outside Europe.

    If you need immigration support, you can speak with our LondonManchester, or Birmingham immigration lawyers. Alternatively, you can check our office finder for your closest branch. We look forward to assisting with your case.


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