Number of Britons living overseas soars to over five million

Published:  15 Jul at 6 PM
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According to a report by the United Nations, well over five million British citizens have emigrated for reasons of work, retirement or general dissatisfaction with the state of their home country.

Since 1990, the number of British-born migrants has increased by 23 per cent, with the majority of those leaving heading for sunnier climes. Australia is the all-time favourite destination, now home to some 1.27 million former British residents.

America is the next most popular place for immigration, with 758,919 Brits in residence, and Canada scores well with 674,371. New Zealand is the third most-wanted place, with 314,000 Britons living there as of 2013.

The above countries, as well as the Republic of Ireland with its 254,000 British incomers, attract mostly those who are looking to find work and further their careers. Retirees in general tend to head towards European Union states enjoying warmer weather and a more relaxed lifestyle, with Spain still at the head of the list.

In spite of recent reports of British expats leaving Spain in droves, the popular expat country is still home to 318,000 retirees and small business owners from the UK. Germany hosts 97,000 UK migrants, and Italy is home to 72,000.

Sussex University professor Ronald Skelton believes that migration can be a rewarding and empowering challenge for many Brits, as well as a chance to find better job opportunities. The need to find new jobs following the financial crash motivated many, he added, and the EU’s open borders and cheap flights are seen as encouraging even more migration.

However, the UN report failed to explain why 294 brave British expats landed themselves in the world’s most brutal dictatorship, North Korea. Surely it can’t be for the weather, the scenery, the cuisine or the culture, leaving extremely well-paid positions as the only logical answer.
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