ONS statistics reveal no impact of Brexit campaigns on UK immigration

Migration to the UK rose slightly in the months leading up to Brexit according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), but during 2015 UK migration stabilised. Regionally, the net number of migrants coming to Yorkshire and the Humber rose by five thousand.  

Estimates compiled by the ONS state that the net migration figure – those coming to the country minus those leaving – for the year ending June 2016 is 335,000 migrants.

The data used by the ONS to estimate this is provisional, and final estimates for migration in this period will be published on 30 November 2017.

Data released today also shows that long-term international migration to the UK during the calendar year 2015 stabilised at just over 630,000 people, and the number of migrants settling in Yorkshire and the Humber actually fell during the same period.

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In Yorkshire and the Humber, net migration has risen.

People leaving the area fell sharply though, so despite a small decline in immigration, the net figure has risen.

Nicola White, Head of International Migration Statistics at the ONS, said: “Net migration remains around record levels, but it is stable compared with recent years. Immigration levels are now among the highest estimates recorded – the inflow of EU citizens is also at historically high levels and similar to the inflow of non-EU citizens; there were also increases in the number of asylum seekers and refugees.

“It is too early to say what effect, if any, the EU Referendum has had on long-term international migration. There does not however appear to have been any significant impact during the run-up to the vote.”

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Nationally, immigration has stabilised.

The ONS defines a migrant as “someone who changes his or her country of usual residence for a period of at least a year, so that the country of destination effectively becomes the country of usual residence”.

This data has been released as Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has been forced to refute allegations that he has privately assured at least four European diplomats that he supports free movement of people across the EU, in direct opposition to official UK policy.

Today also sees the controversial ‘right to rent’ provisions of Immigration Act 2016 come into force. These provisions compel private landlords to guarantee the immigration status of their tenants under pain of fines or even criminal sanctions.

Featured image credit: EG Focus (Flickr)