Valid: 24 November 2011 to 23 February 2012
Interpreting the figures
This release includes new data for the third quarter of 2011.
Topics covered are Work, Study, Family, Before entry, Admissions, Extensions, Settlement, Citizenship, Asylum, Removals and voluntary departures, Detention and the European Economic Area.
The trends reflect changes in levels of immigration, policy and legislative changes, including changes to the Immigration Rules, and world events, as well as the availability and allocation of resources within the UK Border Agency.
Work, study and family:
Data on entry clearance visas and admissions of those who are subject to immigration control coming to the United Kingdom for study, work and family reasons show that: student immigration has seen a general increase since 2005, rising particularly rapidly in 2009; work-related immigration has fallen overall since 2006; and family immigration has shown a slow overall decrease since 2006. However, the latest data for the year ending September 2011 indicate that numbers of study visas have fallen since a peak in the year to June 2010 and work visas may be starting to fall, with 7% and 6% falls respectively compared to the previous year. Visas for family reasons also fell by 8% over the same period.
Excluding visitor and transit visas, 4% fewer entry clearance visas were issued in the year ending September 2011 (592,000) than the previous year. However, there were a record 1.7 million visitor visas issued in the year ending September 2011, 13% higher than a year earlier (1.5 million).
There were 13% fewer non-asylum passengers initially refused entry at ports in the year ending September 2011 (17,399) than in the previous year (19,951), continuing the fall from 31,376 in the year ending September 2005.
There were 105.2 million passenger admissions in the year ending September 2011, 4% higher than the previous year (101.4 million). This consisted of 3.1 million more journeys (+3%) by EEA and Swiss nationals (including British nationals), and 0.7 million more journeys (+5%) by nationals subject to immigration control. The increase since the year ending September 2010 is likely, in part, to reflect lower passenger arrivals during April 2010 because of airport closures due to a volcanic ash cloud.
There were 303,000 people granted an extension of stay (including dependants) in the year ending September 2011, 3% lower than the previous year and continuing the fall from 362,900 in 2008.
The latest year ending September 2011 figures show a fall in total settlement grants to 180,131; 25% lower than the previous year (241,586). This may suggest a peak has been passed, following the completion of the asylum backlog case review which contributed to the previous rise. There were falls in the work (-22%), family (-30%) and other discretionary grant (-37%) categories.
There were 179,613 people granted British citizenship in the year ending September 2011, 9% fewer than in the previous year (197,051). The fall was mainly due to fewer grants based on marriage and to children related to British citizens.
The third quarter of 2011 had the highest quarterly number of asylum applications (4,912) since the third quarter of 2009, mainly due to an increase in applications from nationals of Pakistan, Iran and Syria. Asylum applications continue to be significantly lower than levels seen in the early 2000s.
During the third quarter of 2011, 6,834 people entered immigration detention. This was a slight increase from 6,771 in the third quarter of 2010. Of these 6,834, 30 were children, which compares with 48 in the third quarter of 2010.
Removals and voluntary departures:
During the third quarter of 2011, 13,253 people were removed or departed voluntarily, a 13% fall from 15,261 during the third quarter of 2010. This is the second lowest quarterly figure since the third quarter of 2001, although all the various types of removals and voluntary departures are higher than the second quarter of 2011, which was the lowest quarterly figure.
Headline statistics – latest 12 months
Headline statistics – quarterly data
(1) Excludes dependants.
(2) Includes dependants.
(3) The above data are compared using quarterly comparisons rather than rolling 12-month totals in line with established practice and reflecting that these data series are not identified as subject to seasonal variability.
Further data are available in the tables .
The Immigration Statistics July – September 2011 release provides the second release of data in a new web-based format designed to make data more accessible to users. Further details regarding the change in structure and content can be found with the Immigration Statistics April – June 2011 release.
Within the Before entry topic, data for the total entry clearance visas issued for 2005 to the second quarter of 2011 has remained consistent with those figures published in the Immigration Statistics April – June 2011 release. This follows analysis of changes in the data since publication in August. Rather than revise data for all quarters at each publication, as previously had been standard practice for the visa data, previous data will only be revised once per year unless there are large changes in the data in the interim. This brings entry clearance visa data into line with most other datasets in this release.
Within the Admissions topic in this edition, data for total passenger arrivals, including nationals of European Economic Area and Switzerland are published up to September 2011, providing more recent data than previously available.
As announced in Immigration Statistics April – June 2011 it has been decided to publish data on defendants proceeded against for offences under Immigration Acts in November rather than August of each year. This release contains these data up to 2010 within the Detention topic. The Detention topic also contains for the first time 2010 data on occurrences of people entering detention, alongside previously published data for 2009.
Within the Asylum topic, the annual table on asylum appeal applications and determinations is now available by sex of the main applicant in addition to nationality.
Within the European Economic Area topic, figures for applications received and approvals for registration certificates and accession worker cards from EU2 nationals have been significantly revised from data released in Immigration Statistics April – June 2011. This mainly affects figures for the first and second quarters of 2011, which have been revised upward to include additional data found to have been excluded from previous releases; the revised total approvals for accession worker cards and for registration certificates for the first six months of 2011 are six times higher than previously indicated (12,605 compared to 2,101 in the previous release). Figures for 2007 to 2010 have also been revised, but have changed by only 1 or 2%.
Within the Settlement topic, the annual table on grants of settlement by nationality, table se.03 now additionally includes historical data for 2007 and 2008.
An email distribution list has been established by members of the Migration Statistics User Forum to allow communication between users and producers of migration statistics throughout the year.
Specifically, this is a forum for discussion of migration statistics that allows users to discuss their need for and use of the data and for producers to consult on presentation and changes. The main focus will be on figures for the United Kingdom, but this would not exclude discussion of migration statistics for other countries. Home Office Statistics intends to use this list for communication with users, including data and release developments.
Specific future changes planned, subject to data quality and available resources, include:
providing citizenship grants by region, sex and age since 2004, giving for the first time a historic comparison of the demographics for this data set; and
improving the data quality of the data on Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children and age disputed cases to ensure that those whose age dispute case has been fully resolved are counted correctly.
In addition, further tables will be converted to the re-designed format and the User Guide will be further improved.
Users of migration statistics may be interested in the public consultation that has been launched on the Office for National Statistics’ “Beyond 2011” programme. This is a consultation on user needs relating to the work being undertaken by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to investigate and assess alternative options for producing the population and socio-demographic data required by users, including information currently collected by the ONS on migration via the census. The closing date is 20 January 2012.