Huge increase in Brits applying for EU passports

Published:  8 Jan at 6 PM
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2018 has broken all records for the number of Brits applying for EU passports.

It’s no surprise that the number of British citizens applying for European Union passports soared in 2018, and the rush is now on for the remainder of Brit expats desperate to keep their right to free movement after 29 March this year. The Republic of Ireland was the focus of the majority of new applicants, eligible if their parents or grandparents were born there. In 2017, numbers applying rose by 24 per cent over 2016, and last year’s rise over the 2017 numbers was calculated at 12 per cent with the actual totals of applications running to over 175,000.

Ireland is just one example of an EU member state seeing huge increases in the number of British citizens applying for passports. Sweden received some 2,000 citizenship application in 2018, in spite of the fact there’s a waiting period of over two years. In 2017, some 2,600 Brits applied for French passports, and the full numbers of 2018 applications aren’t yet known but are expected to have soared yet again. Figures from the Netherlands and Germany are expected to show the same trend.

The sad fact is that, of those who’ve applied for EU passports, a high number are expected to have been British expat professionals who may well have decided to give up on the UK and live permanently in Europe due to the anticipated Brexit effect on the UK economy. Totalled along with the increasing numbers of EU expats living and working in the UK who’ve also decided to leave, the prospect of attracting expat professional talent to replace those now in Europe or elsewhere might well be doomed to failure.
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