Immigration falls by a third

The number of immigrants arriving in Britain has dropped "significantly". Net migration has fallen by a third with 163,000 coming to the UK in the year to June 2012, down from 247,000 in the previous year, the Office for National Statistics said.

Live updates

MPs condemn govt over foreign student policy

A group of MPs has heavily criticised the government for rejecting calls to take international students out of its target to reduce non-EU migration.

The Business, Innovation and Skills Committee said in a report released today: “The Government should listen, think again and change course.”

Today's immigration figures have revealed that the number of student visas has fallen by 20% to 209,804.

The committee added: "The government's response was late, woefully short on detail and fails to take account of recent developments.”

Number of student visas falls by 20%

The government has welcomed a fall in immigration. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Today's immigration figures have revealed that the number of student visas has fallen by 20% to 209,804.

Prime Minister David Cameron said recently in India that no limit had been set on the number of student visas to the UK.

But changes to visa rules for non-EU students, which restrict the ease with which a student can stay on in the UK after their studies, are believed to have been prohibitive.

Advertisement

'Significant' drop in immigrants to UK

The number of immigrants arriving in Britain has dropped "significantly", according to the Office for National Statistics.

Key figures:

  • Some 163,000 migrants came to the UK in the year to June 2012, down from 247,000 in the previous year
  • Number of immigrants coming to Britain fell from 589,000 to 515,000
  • Number of migrants leaving the country rose from 342,000 to 352,000
  • Some 117,000 immigrants from New Commonwealth countries arrived in the UK in the year to June, down 30%
  • A total of 62,000 immigrants arrived from countries which joined the EU in 2004, including Poland, the Czech Republic and Lithuania, down 27%

Government welcomes fall in immigration

The government has welcomed the fall in the number of immigrants arriving in Britain.

Net migration has fallen by a third with 163,000 coming to the UK in the year to June 2012, down from 247,000 in the previous year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

Our tough reforms are having an impact in all the right places - we have tightened the routes where abuse was rife and overall numbers are down as a result.

But sponsored student visa applications for our world-class university sector are up and the numbers of skilled people being sponsored by UK employers in sectors such as IT and science have also increased.

We will continue to work hard to bring net migration down from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands by the end of this Parliament and to create a selective immigration system that works in our national interest.

– Immigration Minister Mark Harper

Number of immigrants arriving in UK drops

The number of immigrants arriving in Britain has dropped "significantly", according to figures released today.

Net migration has fallen by a third with 163,000 coming to the UK in the year to June 2012, down from 247,000 in the previous year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

The decline was driven by a drop in the number of immigrants coming to Britain, which fell from 589,000 to 515,000, while the number of migrants leaving the country rose from 342,000 to 352,000.

Back to top