Net migration to UK from EU lowest since 2003
Topics: MIGRATION UK
Net migration to the UK from the EU is at its lowest level since 2003, according to the latest estimates.
In the year to June, after a pre-referendum peak of 218,000 in 2015, EU net migration plummeted to 48,000.
This is the lowest rate since 2003 when it was estimated to be 15,000, according to Office for National Statistics (ONS) data.
That year, fewer countries were members of the European Union but 2004 saw a surge to 84,000 during the largest single expansion of the bloc when 10 countries joined.
Other jumps followed in 2007 and 2013 when more countries joined.
The number of EU citizens arriving into the UK has gradually fallen since 2016, mainly because there has been a drop in people coming to the country for work, the ONS said.
Immigration experts said EU net migration had “fallen dramatically” since before the referendum and reasons could include the lower value of the pound making the UK less attractive, improving economic prospects in some countries of origin and potentially the political uncertainty of the prolonged Brexit process. ■