Reasons for net migration into the UK

The latest stats for UK net migration show annual net migration of 239,000 (Q1 2022). This used to be roughly split between EU and non-EU migrants. But, since Brexit, there has been a big change with 437,000 immigrants from Non-Eu and 195,000 from the EU.


  • In Q1 of 2020, there were 437,000 annual immigration from Non-EU countries and 195,000 from EU Countries
  • Net migration of EU is now close to zero, with just 58,000, compared to 316,000+ from outside EU.

Reasons for migration into the UK


  • According to data by the ONS, the biggest reason for net migration into the UK is to pursue education studies. This accounts for 257,000 (Nov. 2014)
  • The second biggest reason is work related 228,000
  • The third biggest reason is to join family already living in UK or accompany partner moving to UK – 70,000
  • Other reasons 13,000 includes vague responses, such as ‘coming back to live’

Asylum seekers

  • 14,734 people were granted asylum in 2021

Reasons for migration depend on country of origin

Source: ONS migration


  • For recent arrivals (2007-11) study is one of main reasons for migration.
  • Employment and unemployment rates for UK citizens and EU migrants are very similar.

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