More British people moving to the Netherlands

© Hollandse Hoogte
The number of British citizens moving from the UK to the Netherlands increased further in 2019. Emigration from the UK has already accelerated since 2015, even before a British majority voted in favour of an exit from the EU on 23 June 2016. At the same time, Dutch emigration to the UK showed further decline. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports this today on Brexit Day.

In 2019, 2.6 thousand native Dutch people (i.e. people born in the Netherlands) emigrated to the United Kingdom. This is the smallest number in twenty years. Dutch emigration to the UK has shown a substantial decline since 2015. The number of Dutch migrants returning from the UK did not increase last year. On balance, only a few hundred Dutch migrants moved to the UK in 2019. The number still stood at slightly under 2.3 thousand in 2015.

Migration flows between the Netherlands and the UK, native British and Dutch persons
PeriodImmigration UK - Netherlands, native BritishImmigration UK - Netherlands, native Dutch Emigration Netherlands - UK, native BritishEmigration Netherlands - UK, native Dutch
20052354126413663873
20062698135215263954
20072939163314103737
20083478176512603186
20093165176515482739
20103126165517203050
20113255179717773600
20123390169617743344
20133627163919813682
20143735175221983949
20154141200922744277
20164747227125273749
20175134233226503323
2018*5792235727163025

On balance, 3.6 thousand British moved to the Netherlands

Concurrently with the drop in Dutch emigration to the UK, migration of native British people to the Netherlands has risen steadily throughout these years. In 2019, the Netherlands received 6.7 thousand native British immigrants, i.e. a 60-percent rise on 2015. The number of British remigrating from the Netherlands to the UK rose as well in 2019, by a few hundred. Last year’s net migration flow consisted of 3.6 thousand British people moving to the Netherlands.

More foreign nationals as well moving from the UK to the Netherlands

The flow of non-Dutch and non-British migrants moving from the UK to the Netherlands has seen a continuous rise for several years as well. They include relatively many Polish, Spanish, Italian and French citizens. The largest group of emigrants moving from the Netherlands  to the UK - aside from British and Dutch citizens - are Somalis.

Migration flows between the Netherlands and the UK, foreign-born persons
PeriodsImmigration UK - Netherlands, foreign-born personsEmigration Netherlands - UK, foreign-born persons
200512853190
200615003547
200717963135
200822932758
200924462593
201022872664
201124032841
201223602942
201324443107
201425703526
201527043963
201635693967
201743033265
2018*47003460
* Provisional figures


Total net migration between the Netherlands and the United Kingdom has been positive over the past few years. In 2019, 5.4 thousand more migrants moved from the UK to the Netherlands than vice versa. The balance was negative over the period 2010–2015.

Rapidly falling net migration in EU-27

Patterns of Dutch migration between the UK and the Netherlands may be seen as somewhat similar to migration patterns between the UK and Europe (i.e. the EU-27). The EU-27 as a whole has a negative migration balance with the UK: more EU citizens move to the UK than from it. Just as in the Netherlands, this net migration has declined sharply. The number of EU citizens who left the EU-27 to settle in the United Kingdom has declined by one-third since the beginning of 2016, whereas the number of EU citizens returning from the UK to the EU-27 has nearly doubled. On balance, in 2019 almost 50 thousand EU citizens settled in the UK, down from over 200 thousand in 2015.

Migration to and from the UK, EU-27 citizens
 Migration to the UK (x 1,000)Migration from the UK (x 1,000)
2010
(Dec)
21199
2011
(Dec)
21892
2012
(Dec)
18875
2013
(Dec)
22978
2014
(Dec)
29489
2015
(Dec)
30486
2016
(Dec)
249116
2017
(Dec)
243144
2018
(Dec)
202127
2019
(June)
199151
Source: CBS, ONS


The number of non-EU citizens who settle in the United Kingdom has risen steadily over the past five years, while outward migration has remained constant. On balance, 230 thousand non-EU citizens moved to the United Kingdom over the last twelve month-period.

Migration to and from the UK, non-EU citizens
 Migration to the UK (x 1,000)Migration from the UK (x 1,000)
2010
(Dec)
322104
2011
(Dec)
314110
2012
(Dec)
260134
2013
(Dec)
248129
2014
(Dec)
287121
2015
(Dec)
279115
2016
(Dec)
298110
2017
(Dec)
321113
2018
(Dec)
325111
2019
(June)
344115
Source: CBS, ONS

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