Published: Thu, July 19, 2018

European Union net migration falls to lowest level since 2012/13

European Union net migration falls to lowest level since 2012/13

That figure is now around 350,000, according to its figures.

Pro-EU campaigners have warned of an exodus of nurses and midwives as official figures revealed net migration from the EU to the United Kingdom has fallen to its lowest level in almost five years.

Net migration in 2017 was the highest level since September 2011, the government report showed.

Nicola White, director of the global migration service at the ONS, said: "These recent figures show that migration is continuing to add to the British population [although] net migration was at a record low between 2015 and 2016, but has been relatively stable since".

Prime Minister Theresa May has vowed to end unrestricted free movement of European Union citizens to Britain after the country leaves the bloc in March 2019.

An estimated 101,000 more people arrived in the United Kingdom from the bloc than left during the year.

Although this is the lowest level in four years, it's far short of the government's pledge to cut net migration down to "the tens of thousands", as Prime Minister Theresa May pledged in May of last year, according to the Guardian.

"It's time for the government to get serious about reducing immigration instead of caving in to every demand of the immigration lobby" he said.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said a "processing issue" with the International Passenger Survey had resulted in problems with the numbers, delaying release of the latest figures.

Net EU migration into the United Kingdom fell to its lowest point since 2013 at the end of a year ago, continuing the marked decline in the numbers of EU immigrants which started at the time of the Brexit vote.

Meanwhile, non-EU net migration has risen to an estimated 227,000 past year - more than twice the figure for the EU.

"As this data shows, the government's net migration target is utterly misconceived", Diane Abbott, the shadow home secretary, told the newspaper.

"But while it is not unusual to see quarterly ups and downs, we know more needs to be done if we are to bring net migration down to sustainable levels".

It is the highest for 18 months, however.

Ms White added: "Immigration has remained stable overall at 630,000; and emigration has been gradually increasing since 2015, and is now at around 350,000".

"What these statistics show is that more of the people who are coming to the United Kingdom are coming for the reasons we would want, to take up a definite job or to study", Immigration Minister Caroline Noakes said.

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