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Net migration to the UK reaches a record half a million, according to ONS estimates

Net migration to the UK has hit a record high with an estimated 504,000 more people arriving in the UK than leaving last year, according to new ONS estimates.

For the first time since 1991, more EU nationals have left the UK than arrived. The net migration of EU citizens is minus 51,000 for the year to June 2022, according to new estimates.

Total immigration to the UK is at its highest level since the ONS began recording statistics in 1964, with 1.1 million people arriving last year.

Net migration is also at an all-time high. The last time net migration to the UK was this high was in March 2015, when the figure was 331,000.

In the year leading up to June 2022, the Office for National Statistics estimated that net migration of non-EU nationals to the UK was 509,000.

Commenting on the statistics, Jay Lindop, Deputy Director of the Center for International Migration at the ONS, said that a number of global events contributed to migration to the UK last year.

She said international migration patterns in the 12 months to June 2022 were “unprecedented”.

“These include the end of lockdown restrictions in the UK, the first full post-EU transition period, the war in Ukraine, the resettlement of Afghans and a new visa route for Hong Kong (overseas) British nationals, all of which have contributed to the record levels of long-term immigration we’ve seen – she added.

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