Immigration helps drives UK population to 66.4 MILLION after births fall to lowest level in a decade and deaths spike
- UK population growth stayed the same rate last year at 0.6 per cent, ONS says
- A drop in births and increase in deaths was offset by international immigration
- The population was 66.4million in the middle of last year, according to figures
Immigration helped drive the UK population to 66.4million last year – despite births falling to the lowest level in a decade and deaths spiking.
A drop in births and the highest number of deaths since the turn of the century was offset by inflows from abroad, according to the latest official figures.
Over the 12 months to the middle of 2018, the UK population rose year-on-year by 0.6 per cent – the same rate as the previous year.
The latest calculations show there were an estimated 66,436,000 people living in the country at the end of June last year.
The annual growth rate is still slower than any year since mid-2004, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
The annual growth rate is still slower than any year since mid-2004, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said
Births were down 2 per cent year-on-year at 744,000 – the fewest since 2006 – while deaths went up 20,000 to 623,000.
That was the highest number since 2000.
As a result, the contribution to population from so-called ‘natural change’ was at the lowest since 2004 at 121,000.
The additions from international immigration was 275,000 – bigger than natural factors for the fifth year in a row.
The immigration figure was 45,000 higher than last year, and higher than the average for the past five years.
Neil Park, head of the ONS population estimates unit, said: ‘For the fifth year in a row, net international migration was a bigger driver of population change than births and deaths.
‘However, overall population change to the year mid-2018 has remained fairly stable as an increase in net international migration has been roughly matched by the fewest births in over a decade and the highest number of deaths since the turn of the century.’
The net addition to the population from international immigration was 275,000 – bigger than natural factors for the fifth year in a row (file picture)