Migrants from the European continent are costing the British taxpayer £1.2 billion a year, the equivalent of £3 million a day, a study has found.
In a study that shows the true cost of Britain’s weak border laws, Migration Watch UK analysed the amount of money that migrants from the European Economic Area (EEA) contribute to UK public finances, and compared it to what they take out in terms of benefits and making use of public services.
They found that in 2014/15, migrants from the EEA were a net drain on public finances, with those from Eastern Europe having a particularly large impact.
The EEA is composed of all European Union (EU) member states plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, meaning that the vast majority of migrants looked at in this study will be in the country thanks to EU free movement rules.
The research also looked at the impact of migration since 2001, finding that migrants from Eastern Europe have a significantly higher cost than those from elsewhere in the EEA. Eastern Europeans who had arrived in Britain since 2001 had a fiscal cost of £2.8 billion, offsetting a £2.8 billion fiscal contribution from those from elsewhere in the EEA.
It is not just European migrants who are a drain on public finances. The study also found that those from outside the EEA cost the Exchequer £15.6 billion in 2014/15, with those who had arrived since 2001 costing £6.2 billion
Lord Green of Deddington, Chairman of Migration Watch UK, said: “This report shows that EU migration, taken as a whole, is not making the positive fiscal contribution that has so often been claimed.
“Furthermore, it is adding to the rapidly increasing pressures on housing and public services. It also contributes to our population increase of half a million every year – roughly a city the size of Liverpool.”
Last week, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) released figures showing the scale of EU immigration was twice as high as previously thought thanks to the number of “short term” migrants in the country.
The admission came after Breitbart London questioned last year why there were officially only 53,000 new Romanian and Bulgarian immigrants yet 214,000 new National Insurance numbers were issued for people from those countries.
The ONS finally admitted last week, that its official statistics do not include so-called short-term migrants – that is migrants who stay for less than 12 months.
In February, Breitbart London also reported how 650,000 new National Insurance Numbers has been issued, the most recent migration figures showed only 260,000 new immigrants.
The revelations come as polling suggests immigration could be the deciding factor in the outcome of June’s EU referendum.
A poll for Sky News found that 28 per cent of Brits who are still undecided on how to vote say immigration is the most important issue for them, compared to just 15 per cent who think the economy is most important.