Fears that net migration hit up to 997,000
Ministers are braced for immigration to soar towards a million when fresh figures are released today.
Long-awaited statistics are expected to show another huge spike in net migration in 2022, likely to more than 700,000, after the year to June saw a record 504,000.
Under David Cameron and Theresa May there was a commitment to bring the long-term net migration figures into the tens of thousands, and one of the selling points for Brexit was ‘taking back control’ of borders.
MPs have been demanding action from Rishi Sunak, with the fallout underlined in a poll finding Labour are more trusted on immigration.
The PM has stressed large inflows of refugees from Afghanistan, Ukraine and Hong, and focused on his vow to curb illegal immigration by ‘stopping the boats’ crossing the Channel.
The government sought to head off a backlash earlier this week by announcing that most foreign students will be barred from bringing dependants with them.
But allies of Home Secretary Suella Braverman have made clear she wants more drastic steps, and has faced resistance from Cabinet colleagues concerned about damaging the economy.
The Office for National Statistics figures will cover the 12 months ending December 2022. They estimate the net migration level – the balance between inflows and outflows – for those who intend to stay in the country for at least a year.
Source of data and images: dailymail