Health & Fitness

United Kingdom’s Decades-Long Immigration Shift Interrupted by Brexit and the Pandemic

Did you know that more than 336,000 immigrants move to the United Kingdom each year after they depart from the country? 

With more and more people arriving in the UK, the number of immigrants grows yearly. It became more diverse until the Covid-19 pandemic came in 2020. Starting from March 2011, the nine-year-long run shows that about 336,000 immigrants worldwide have immigrated to the UK. By the year 2015, this figure grew up to 191,000 each year. The number has become more prominent in previous decades. The flow of remittances from the UK to other countries has also increased significantly as more and more expatriates send money online to their families every day. 

As arrivals grew, so did public opinion against immigration to the UK. Due to the tensions and anxious sentiments of the public, migration policies were reshaped as a resulting factor. These ongoing sentiments drove the 2016 Brexit vote, resulting in the UK’s departure from the European Union. But did Brexit and the drastic changes due to the pandemic interrupt the UK’s decade-long immigration shift?

What is Brexit?

Brexit is a coined abbreviation of two words, “Britain” and “Exit”, which indicates the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union. Though the withdrawal process commenced on 23 June 2016, it came into action on 1st February 2020. As of 1st January 2021, the relationship between the UK and the European Union stands under the label “Trade and Corporation Agreement”. This complex agreement can further be divided into four highlighted sections.

  • Section 1: Free trade, customs duties between the UK and the EU, abolishing quotas, building their name on the Level Playing Field (LPF) – circulating fair competition – one of the most pressured demands of the EU during the negotiations.

  • Section 2: The establishment of the framework for economic, environmental, social and fishing cooperation and continuing provisions targeting energy connectivity and transport management. All this, along with coordination in fields related to social security.

  • Section 3: Based on the existing mechanism of Europol and Eurojust, the EU regulated an association on internal security measures, including allocation of detainees, financing of terrorism and precautions for money laundering.

  • Section 4 establishes a governance structure based on an institutional framework. The framework has an “Association Council”, which is to be co-chaired by a member of the European Union Commission and a representative from the British Council at the ministerial level who will supervise the Agreements between the two.

All these sections form to become the Brexit vote. But how has it impacted the migration rate in the UK for migrants who wish to live in the UK?

Impact of Brexit on the UK

Starting from 2015, about 29% of migrants in the UK were from the Polish grounds. About a third of EU immigrants live in the London making EU countries a big part of the migration circle. The Brexit vote impacted the UK drastically along with the pandemic on the run. Without the Brexit vote, it was easier for European immigrants to migrate to the UK, find suitable jobs, and own businesses in the UK. But Brexit created a clash for the talented immigrants and made it hard for them to be a part of the UK. 

The main reason for the Brexit vote to be put into action was that ordinary UK-born individuals feared that immigration reduces their chances of good job opportunities and puts them in line with reduced pay. This concern was boosted when the people agreed that it creates more competition for the natives to compete against immigrants. But all of this was a misinterpretation and misconception. When the UK has more immigrants, more goods are consumed, creating more job opportunities for natives and immigrants. Nevertheless, Brexit had a significant impact on the immigration circle.

Countless overseas workers coming from developing countries find better job opportunities in the UK and support their families by transferring funds back home through renowned money transfer companies like ACE Money Transfer.

Impact of Pandemic on immigration

To add fuel to the fire, the pandemic did not help. Borders were closed, businesses shut down, and many had to be quarantined in the UK due to the drastic changes made to prevent the pandemic. This disastrous era affected the UK greatly in 2020, as both Brexit and the pandemic joined forces to impact immigration immensely. 

The UK finds itself at an inflexion point after the combined actions of Brexit and the Pandemic. Its decade-long support for migrants and their mobility in the UK has been interrupted. The fundamental economic value that the migrants brought to the UK has been lost. To add to the erroneous effect of the Pandemic, it was a misconception that natives pay more taxes than the migrants. But the fact was that immigrants pay more taxes which was a blow to the UK due to Brexit and the Pandemic. But it is yet to fail all value to immigration as the new immigration regime is to be expected to lead the inflows of migrants worldwide.  

The future of immigration in the UK

According to the Office of Statistics – UK, the number of immigrants has grown as of 2020. About 9.2 million UK-born residents accounted for 14% of the population in the UK. Whereas 6 million non-UK residents built the 9% immigrant category, tripling since 1980. Though many foreign-born have become UK citizens, categorised in the 14% of the population, they were once immigrants in the UK. 

Even though the Pandemic and the Brexit vote have been accounted for in the UK, the future of immigration still seems bright. The only facts that will be changing are the rule and the new laws presented by the UK and not a combined force with the European Union. Many individuals feel this may forcefully impact the European migrants’ economic development in the UK. But it all depends upon the new policies presented by the UK, which so far have brought more immigrants in the long run.

So, should you migrate to the UK?

The answer is simple, YES! As the Pandemic seems to subside and the Brexit vote is in action, the statistics still seem to favour migrants worldwide. Brexit vote may not entirely affect the migrants, but new policies will be for them to focus upon. So, there will be no need to be scared of new laws and shrug off the thought of migrating to the UK. If you do so, you will miss out on the luxury the UK has to offer its migrants. One of the chief benefits of living and working in the UK is that migrants can safely, securely, and conveniently make an online money transfer to their families back home.

If you want to know more about what the UK offers, join ACE Money Transfer.

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