United Kingdom: Migration rate hits record – 11/24/2022 – World

The United Kingdom’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) announced this Thursday (24) that the migration rate in the country reached an all-time high with a balance of 504,000 migrants in the period of a year, between June of 2021 and the same month of this year.

According to the agency, the increase was driven by inhabitants of countries that are not part of the European Union, and the record in the net rate —balance between immigration and emigration— is also explained by the resumption of travel after the most severe phase of restrictions due to to Covid-19, which made it possible to increase the arrival of exchange students.

To arrive at the rate of 504,000, the ONS estimates that 1.1 million migrants arrived in the UK over the course of a year, an increase of 435,000 compared to the previous measurement. According to the ONS, the account does not include those arriving by clandestine routes, such as in small boats in the English Channel – where the increasing flow has become the reason for recent diplomatic tensions.

Another factor that led to the record was the creation of a new type of visa, aimed at citizens of Ukraine, Afghanistan and British people living in Hong Kong – together, these groups totaled 138,000 migrants.

Among emigrants who left the country, the largest share is citizens of European Union countries. “A series of world events impacted international migration patterns in the 12 months to June 2022,” said Jay Lindop, Director of the Center for International Migration at ONS.

According to her, the scenario is uncertain. “The many factors, independent of each other, that contribute to migration at this point indicate that it is too early to say whether the picture will be maintained.”

Concerns about the impact of migration were one of the levers behind Brexit in 2016. In his mandate at the time, then Prime Minister David Cameron unsuccessfully tried to reduce the migration rate to less than 100,000 per person. year.

According to the ONS, both total immigration and the net rate were the highest since statistical records began in 1964. The previous record was 330,000 in 2015. A spokesman for the current premier, Rishi Sunak , said he is “fully committed” to reducing the figures, “considering all options”.

In opposition, the Labor Party said statistics showed the government had mismanaged the asylum and immigration systems and had “completely failed to try to control the situation”.

The expressive number of migrations has been in the headlines over the last few weeks, when business leaders asked the government to make processes more flexible, to attract qualified professionals and help in the economic recovery. The request was rejected by Sunak, who emphasized the need to combat irregular immigration.

Amid criticism over conditions at an overcrowded migrant processing center in southern England, Sunak and Home Secretary Suella Braverman have been pressed into action to stem the flow of vessels through the English Channel. Braverman has been the target of recent harsh criticism by classifying the migratory movement to the United Kingdom as an “invasion”.

Earlier this month, the country signed an agreement with France to increase efforts to detain migrants in the canal. The released statistics show that 33,029 people arrived in the UK in small boats in the region between January and September — 61% of them docked during the northern hemisphere summer.

In August, the largest number of anchorages for these vessels was recorded since data began to be collected. Another 6,371 migrants used alternative irregular means in the first nine months of the year.

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