More than 600,000 migrants arrived in the United Kingdom in 2018 — akin to the population of a city the size of Belfast.
The data, released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), said that over a quarter of a million more people arrived with the intention of staying 12 months than left in 2018.
In total over the previous 12 months, 602,000 new people migrated to Britian, while 343,000 emigrated — showing a continued strong trend towards overall net migration, totalling 258,000 people.
The UK also granted asylum, alternative forms of leave, or resettlement to 17,304 people in the year ending March 2019 — an increase on the previous year.
Grants of protection reached their highest number since 2003.