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Volume 620: debated on Monday 23 January 2017

16. How many foreign students from (a) EU and (b) non-EU countries were included as part of the net migration figures in the last 12 months for which figures are available. (908293)

Long-term migration statistics are produced by the independent Office for National Statistics. The most recent figures estimate that in the year ending June 2016, 113,000 non-EU nationals came to the UK to study; in that same year, 45,000 non-EU nationals who were former students left. For EU nationals, the corresponding figures are 34,000 and 18,000 respectively.

I thank the Minister for that detailed response. I accept that students are classified as immigrants internationally, but when the immigration figures are published, would it not be a good idea to state how many of the people in the figures are students bringing money to this country?

I can confirm to my hon. Friend that these statistics are produced and presented by the ONS, and that figures for students are clearly identified separately within those statistics.

On this immigration-related matter, I would call the hon. Member for Linlithgow and East Falkirk (Martyn Day) if he were standing, but if he does not stand, I will not.

21. This Government’s immigration policies are separating rather than uniting families because of the ridiculous financial thresholds and restrictive rules on evidence of financial support. When will these rules be changed to support the real needs of family units? (908298)

It is certainly very important for family reunification, particularly for spouses, that rules are in place to ensure that these people are not a burden on the taxpayer. Indeed, the levels set are such that if there were a separate figure for Scotland, it would be higher, given that average incomes in Scotland are higher than those in the UK overall.