Between April and June 2020 only 1,411 Portuguese immigrated to the United Kingdom, against 5,021 between January and March, according to data from the Ministry of Labour and Pensions.

In the second quarter of 2019, 7,015 Portuguese were registered in British social security, 80 percent more than in the same period of 2020.
The impact of the pandemic on the arrival of workers in the UK is reflected in the record 55,000 social security enrolments in the second quarter between April and June 2020, a 72 percent reduction from the same quarter of 2019, and the lowest figure since 2002.

The Ministry of Work and Pensions quarterly report, published with data for the 12 months prior to June, shows that between June 2019 and June 2020 there 18,314 Portuguese immigrated, 18 percent less than the 22,369 written in the previous 12 months between June 2018 and June 2019.

These figures represent a reversal of the upward trend that had occurred at the beginning of the year, before the impact of the pandemic was recorded.

In the 12 months to the end of March, 23,925 Portuguese were registered in the British social security system, 22 percent more than in the same period last year.

Meanwhile, more than half of Portuguese candidates received a permanent residence permit in the United Kingdom under the European Union (EU) Citizen Registration System opened following Brexit.

Of the 271,210 Portuguese applications processed by the British Home Office up to 30 June, 192,980 (60 percent) received the permanent title (‘settled status’), awarded when people have been in the country for at least five years, and 103,400 (38 percent) the provisional title (‘pre-settled status’) because they arrived less than five years ago.

However, 4,820 (1.8 percent) were refused, withdrawn or considered invalid.

These figures compare with a total of 3,463 million applications processed, of which 1,984 million (57 percent) received permanent status, 1,427 million (41 percent) provisional status and 51,320 (1.5 percent) rejected or invalidated.

Portugal is the country with the fourth highest number of applications, behind Poland, Romania and Italy.

The system will be open until 30 June, 2021 for Europeans settling in the UK until 31 December, the end of the transition period negotiated following the UK’s departure from the EU on 31 January.

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