Selin ATAY-TDO- According to a new study, the number of British citizens emigrating to European countries has risen by 30% since the 2016 Brexit referendum. The study also warned of a potential "brain drain" of citizens as they settle in continental Europe.
The number of British people settling in European Union countries each year was 73,642 between 2016 and 2018, up from 56,832 between 2008 and 2015.
The figures, based on OECD and Eurostat data, come from a joint study by the Oxford-in-Berlin Research Partnership and the Berlin-based WZB Social Science Centre.
The UK formally left the EU in January and is currently in a transition period that will expire at the end of the year.
As part of its Brexit plans, Boris Johnson's government has pledged to end the free movement rights which gives European Union citizens the right to live, work, and settle in other member states without applying for residency there. It means United Kingdom citizens will no longer have the same freedoms to live and work in the EU as they do now.
Brexit had been the "by far the most dominant driver of migration decisions since 2016.", Daniel Tetlow of Oxford-in-Berlin, the report's co-author, said.
“These increases in numbers are of a magnitude that you would expect when a country is hit by a major economic or political crisis”, Daniel Auer of WZB, the co-author, said.
The study also recorded a 500% increase in UK citizens who moved to the EU. Germany witnessed the biggest rise of 2,000%, with 31,600 UK citizens having naturalized there since 2016.