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Immigration and the changing face of Britain | Immigration Matters

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The Office for National Statistics has released a major report last week on the changing nature of Britain’s aging population which has been influenced by immigration.

The document covers figures on subjects such as life expectancy, immigration and childbirth rates.

Here are some of the main findings:

11 per cent of the UK population are born in another country.

The number of foreign-born people living in Britain has risen dramatically since eight eastern European countries joined the EU in 2004.

In 1981 only 6% of people living here were born overseas. Now there are about 6.5million living in the UK who were not born here.

Of these, 738,000 are from eastern Europe, a rise from 103,000 in 2001.

Most European countries have a much lower percentage of foreign inhabitants, with the exception of landlocked Switzerland and Luxembourg.

Countries such as Finland and Hungary have a foreign population of just 4%.

Sir Andrew Green, chairman of MigrationWatch UK, said: “Looking at today’s percentage does not give the full picture.

“The reality is that foreign immigration under Labour came to three million, of which 300,000 came from the European Union. This is by far the most rapid leap in population since the Norman invasion in 1066.”

16 per cent of the UK population are now over 65 and this is projected to rise to 24% by 2035.

While the UK’s population is ageing, the increase is only slight.

Back in 1985, the UK had one of the oldest populations in Europe, with 15% of us being older than 65.

However, in the last 24 years, countries like Germany and Italy now have a population of 20% over the age of 65. This will be almost 30% by 2035.

Japan is the most aged country, with 22% of the population over 65.

1.9 Number of children women are having compared to 2.4 children a generation ago.

One in five women born in 1964 are reaching the end of their childbearing years without any children compared to just one in eight born in 1937.

However the 1.9 figure has leapt slightly from 2001, when it hit an all-time low of 1.6. The UK’s fertility rate is still one of the highest in Europe, with only France and Ireland slightly higher.

Anastasia de Waal, deputy director at think tank Civitas, said: “In the 1930s women’s role was much more about motherhood.

“But modern women are more independent and can choose not to have a family.

“There has also been a huge impact from contraception. Women able to make a decision about whether they want a family or not – it is not something which just happens any more.”

77.7 Life expectancy in years in Britain for males born between 2007 and 2009. For females it is 81.9.

This is a big leap from 20 years ago when newborn boys were expected to live until 72.4 and girls to 78.

There are also more than three times as many people over 100 living in Britain than there were 20 years ago. Source: The Star and ONS.

With an aging population Europe will need an ever growing army of care and support workers to looking after us in our old age.

But even now, with Senior Carers on the official shortage occupation list, the UK Government is blocking care home owners from recruiting non-EU workers.

The interim immigration cap, introduced by the coalition government in the summer, has prevented care industry employers from using their previously granted allocations of employment certificates (CoS) to employ much need overseas workers.

The English Community Care Association (ECCA) is taking the government to court over its immigration cap policy on Senior Carer work permits

The two day hearing which started yesterday challenges the government’s decision to introduce and interim cap and CoS allocation on the basis of salary.

See also:

Immigration cap already in place – for Care Workers

If you need any immigration advice or help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, dependant visa or an appeal against a refusal please email: or visit

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