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why do so many immigrants come to the uk

There are two questions here. Is the UK really a top destination for people
compared to other European countries? If so, why? The UK isnt particularly high up the league table of countries by number of asylum seekers. Last year it had the in the 28-country EU, or the 17 highest in terms of existing population. There isnt much direct evidence to suggest that the UK is disproportionately favoured by asylum seekers. The International Organisation for Migration with migrants earlier this year. It found that interviewed along the Central Mediterranean route from North Africa to Italy said they intended to reach the UK. Of those travelling through, the UK wasnt a popular enough destination to be singled out in the analysis, which says that most wanted to reach Germany. That tallies with now living in Europe, which asked about intended destination at the time of departure. Again, almost half chose Germany, and only a handful the UK. While almost one in three ended up in a different country to that intended, hardly anyone in this study reported a frustrated desire to get to Britain. That said, there will be variation depending on nationality. More Eritrean citizens travelling via Italy than any other country in the IOM research, and a smaller December 2014 survey that the UK was the most popular destination for Iranians preparing to emigrate. Many people fleeing conflict will stay a lot closer to home. Only 40% of Syrians expressing a wish to emigrate in January 2015 said that Europe was their preferred destination, a Gallup poll. The UN refugee agency that the majority of those who have fled the conflict is hosted in Syrias neighbouring countries. This being the real world, there is no easy answer to the question why? , as immigration lawyer Colin Yeo. A report for the Refugee Council in 2010 found of the 43 asylum seekers and refugees interviewed hadnt originally intended to come to the UK. It found that agents arranging clandestine travel were an important factor in determining where people end up.

That echoes the of a Home Office study from 2002 thats still cited in discussion of migrants motivations. The Australian version of the House of Commons Library asylum seekers generally have limited options available to them, and choices are made within a very narrow field of possibilities. Their choices and their journeys are often strongly influenced by the people smugglers, or agents, they engage to assist them. Social and economic factors are relevant, less so the availability of benefits Researchers say that, where people can choose, factors such as colonial and historical links, the presence of family members, general reputation as a safe country and language are relevant factors. Theres mixed evidence on whether people choose between countries based on their knowledge of its asylum system, Professor Heaven Crawley, a former head of Home Office asylum research. Some studies suggest that asylum seekers are drawn to countries with a more generous asylum regime, whereas others point to little or no knowledge about how the system works. But economic opportunities, particularly being able to get a job,. As this suggests, theres not necessarily an easy dividing line between genuine refugees fleeing conflict on the one hand, and economic migrants seeking new opportunities on the other. A person can easily be both. It seems unlikely that the benefits system is relevant. Professor Crawley that there is no statistically significant relationship between the level of social and welfare benefits and asylum applications. Weve why the UKs welfare system is an unlikely pull factor for asylum seekers, and compared the available to asylum seekers in different European countries. into the UK, according to the. At the same time, new asylum show how many people apply for refugee status here. The immigration figures are complicated by the fact the ONS has two ways of counting: the Long-term International Migration (LTIM) figures, which are the most comprehensive, taking asylum-seekers into account; and the International Passenger Survey of people leaving and arriving at ports and airports.

But what are the key facts? How many people are really coming into the UK - and leaving? The big number in today's story is the net migration of 250,000 people - the difference between the 593,000 people who came into the country in the year to June 2011 and the 343,000 who left the country to live abroad for more than 12 months. The government has pledged to bring that down to "tens of thousands". Although the numbers of people coming into the country are up by about 2% on the previous year, the reason the balance has grown may be more due to the 1. 2% drop in people emigrating. The figures for the first year of the coalition government showed that net migration actually rose from 235,000 to 250,000 in their first 12 months in office. This increase was driven by falls in the emigration side of the equation, with the number of people going to live abroad at its lowest level since 1998. Where do people come from? Press play and roll over a dot to see which country. International Passenger Survey estimates The International Passenger Survey estimates shows India as the top country for people coming to the UK with 11. 9% of all immigrants. It's followed by Pakistan, (5. 8%), Poland (5. 4%), Australia (5. 2%) and China (5. 2%). That has changed a lot since the early-1990s, as the animation above shows, when Germany was the top country. It also shows that most people emigrating from the UK go to Australia, followed by the USA The Home Office has. They show the number of applications for asylum, excluding dependants, has risen on the year - in 2010 it was 17,916, down from 24,487 the year before - 2011 was up to 19,804. And if you look at them quarter by quarter, 2011 saw a rise.

The figures show how asylum applications are affected by world instability. In 2010 and 2011, Iranians made the most asylum applications; in 2009, it was Zimbabweans. However, recent unrest in Libya has led to a "substantial increase in asylum applications from Libyan nationals in the period January to September 2011 (672 applications compared to 62 between January and September 2010), although numbers of applications fell during the fourth quarter of 2011 to just 49". Syrian applications have gone up too - from 127 to 353 between 2010 and 2011. 2011 asylum applications. We've extracted the 2011 asylum seeker figures so far. Removals statistics have been. They were 52,526, down 13% from 60,244 during 2010 and down 23% from the peak of 67,981 during 2008. A third of the fall in 2011 can be accounted for by a lower number of non-asylum cases refused entry at port and subsequently removed (down 15% from 18,276 during 2010 to 15,556 during 2011). When excluding port removals, there has been a 12% fall in the total number of people forcibly removed or departing voluntarily in 2011 (down from 41,968 to 36,970); this fall has been affected by the decreased numbers of assisted voluntary returns and other voluntary departures, particularly in the first and second quarters of 2011 respectively. In the year to June 2011 the estimated number of long-term migrants whose main reason for entering the UK was work-related was 185,000 - 22% lower than the peak of 239,000 in the year to June 2008. The estimated number of long-term migrants whose main reason for entering the UK was formal study was 237,000 in the year to June 2011 - lower than the peak of 248,000 arriving to study in the year to September 2010. The full data is downloadable. Is there anything we've missed - and can you do anything with it? Can you do something with this data? Flickr Please post your visualisations and mash-ups on our Contact us at

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