Net migration rises to 282,000 but EU level falls

NET migration rose last year as inflows of citizens from Europe and other areas added 282,000 people to the UK population, official figures showed today.

The Office for National Statistics said that about 630,000 people, including 240,000 EU citizens, moved here from abroad during 2017. Only 349,000 left the country to live overseas.

That meant there were 282,000 more arrivals than departures during the year — a rise of 33,000 compared with the 2016 tally.

There was also a net inflow of 101,000 EU citizens last year. Most were from the “EU 15” nations, such as Spain, Italy and France, but there was a continuing net inflow from Eastern Europe.

The 240,000 arrivals outweighed the 139,000 departures, indicating that any deterrent effects of the Brexit vote have been limited, even though the number of Europeans departing rose by 23,000 over the 12-month period, while the number arriving dropped slightly by 9,000.

However, the EU net migration total was the lowest since 2013. Louis MacWilliam, an immigration lawyer at Blacks Solicitors LLP, said: “This suggests more needs to be done to reassure EU nationals that their long-term future in the UK is secure.”

There were also 227,000 more people moving to this country from outside the EU during 2017, mostly from Asian countries, than departing. That total was up by 46,000.

Nicola White, the head of migration statistics at the ONS, said net migration had dipped since the pre-referendum peak, but was consistent with earlier years. “It fell after record levels in 2015 and early 2016 and has been broadly stable since. This is similar to the level recorded in the year ending September 2014. Immigration has remained broadly stable and emigration has shown a gradual increase since 2015.”

Source: Evening Standard – Link

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