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UK net migration hits record high – RT World News

Net migration to the UK is almost double what it was in 2015, the year before the Brexit referendum

Net migration to the UK hit a record high of 606,000 in 2022, according to official estimates from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). It is a 20% increase from the previous record of 504,000 the previous year, with the inflated figures coming shortly after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s pledge to reduce the number of legal migrations after he was taken in office in October.

According to statistics released by the ONS on Thursday, the influx of legal migrants is partly driven by the UK government’s visa regime for Ukrainian refugees, as well as people migrating to Britain for employment reasons. or education. Net migration is defined by calculating the number of people arriving in a country minus those leaving it.

“The main drivers of the increase were people coming to the UK from non-EU countries for work, study and for humanitarian purposes, including those arriving from Ukraine and Hong Kong,” Jay Lindop, director of the Center for International Migration at the Office for National Statistics, told Reuters on Thursday.

The British government body added that 2022 was a “single year” for migration due to “world events” including the Russian military operation in Ukraine.

Legal migration has been a central topic in the British political ecosystem for several years. This was a major issue during Britain’s Brexit referendum in 2016, in which a majority voted to leave the European Union and take control of Britain’s borders, as many voters told the ‘era. Net migration to the UK in 2015 was 329,000, just over half the 2022 tally.

The total number of long-term immigrants to the UK was estimated at 1.2 million last year, the ONS said. 925,000 of them are third-country nationals. Emigration out of the UK was around 557,000.

UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman said last year she hoped immigration figures could be reduced to “dozens of thousands,” while Rishi Sunak had signaled he would stick to former Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s pledge to reduce the number to around 245,000. However, speaking on the matter this week, Sunak did not clear target ahead of the UK general election due next year, in which migration to the UK is expected to be a key issue.

Home Office figures released on Thursday also show a record backlog of asylum seeker cases in the UK, with 172,758 awaiting trial at the end of March this year, an increase of 57 % compared to the previous year.

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