Majority of migrants moving to the UK are non-Europeans

Non-Europeans have made up the majority of migrants moving to the UK for work for the first time since 2006, new analysis of official data has found. A report has found that of the 170,000 non-British citizens who moved to the UK in 2019 for at least a year to work, more than 50% were non-EU citizens.

The report, which analysed data from the Home Office and the Office for National Statistics, said between 2007 and 2019, EU citizens made up two-thirds of long-term migrants moving to the UK for work, however this has been in decline since the UK voted to leave the EU in 2016.

The report found that EU citizens were still far more likely to be traveling to the UK for work that those from elsewhere, but non-EU citizens working in the UK were more likely to be in higher skilled roles – in part because freedom of movement has allowed EU workers to work in any occupation, while those coming from elsewhere are required to meet skills and salary thresholds.

Thechanging number of EU and non-EU migrants could be down to a number of factors, including the low unemployment rate the UK saw before the start of the Coronavirus outbreak. This may have reduced the number of lower and medium skilled level vacancies that are more likely to be filled by EU workers.

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