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UK population rises at slowest rate in more than a decade to 66 million as experts point to Brexit

The latest figures from the Government give a population estimate for June 2017 Photo: PA

The population of the UK has risen by its lowest rate for over a decade, the first official population estimates since the EU referendum show.

Demographers’ latest calculations show there were an estimated 66,040,229 million people living in the country at the end of June last year.

Over the 12 months to the middle of 2017, the number of inhabitants increased by 392,000 people – or 0.6%, the lowest growth rate since mid-2004.

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The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the EU referendum is likely to be one of the key drivers of the changes.

The Migration Statistics Quarterly Bulletin for the period noted that: “The number of people immigrating for a definite job has remained stable but there has been a 43% decrease in the number of people immigrating to look for work over the last year, especially for EU citizens.

“These changes suggest that Brexit is likely to be a factor in people’s decision to move to or from the UK – but decisions to migrate are complex and other factors are also going to be influencing the figures.”