Comment on the ONS 2016-based population projections


October 26, 2017

Commenting, Lord Green of Deddington, Chairman of Migration Watch UK, said:

Given that net migration has averaged about 250,000 a year over the last ten years, the immigration assumption of 165,000 underlying the principal projection is extraordinarily low. This is serious because it will lead to inadequate planning for housing, schools, hospitals and infrastructure – as, indeed, we have seen in recent years. Yet again the ONS have been much too cautious.

It is also of note that, on the principal projection, immigration, including the effect on births, will account for 77% of population growth over the next 25 years. If immigration continues at the ONS high migration assumption, which is roughly present levels, the population will grow by almost ten million, of which 82% will be due to immigration – that is an additional eight million people.

This underlines the need for a successful Brexit which could substantially reduce recent levels of net EU migration, perhaps by 100,000 a year.

Note to editors

See the full ONS bulletin.

If immigration continues at around current levels, 45% of the increase in households in England over a 25 year period will be due to immigration – that is 110,000 new homes a year or one every five minutes, night and day. However, ONS statistics show that 90% of the additional households in England over the last ten years have had a foreign-born head.

A 2016 YouGov poll found that nearly three-quarters of respondents (73%) thought Britain was already either very or fairly crowded.



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