This briefing reviews the migration trends and policy changes in 2012 and looks forward to possible developments in 2013. Next year will be a crucial one for the government because they will be more than halfway through the parliament during which they has pledged to reduce net immigration to the 'tens of thousands'.

In 2013, we expect:

  • Further significant falls in non-EU student immigration
  • Continued steady declines in non-EU immigration for work and family reasons
  • A modest increase in immigration from the EU
  • A small increase in asylum claims
  • Rising net emigration by UK nationals, and modest increases in emigration by non-EU nationals

The briefing shows that net migration will fall to around 140,000 next year, following a fall of over 25% in the year to March 2012. But net migration will begin to rise again in 2014, although final figures for that year will not be available until after the 2015 General Election.