The recent net long-term migration to the UK has remained stable but fallen by a third since its peak in 2005, official figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.
In the year ending December 2013, net long-term migration to the UK was estimated to be 212,000, not a statistically significant increase from 177,000 the previous year.
While the recent patterns of net migration over the last two years show an increase since the lowest estimate of 154,000 (year ending September 2012), net migration has continued to be lower than the general level of net migration since 2004.
In the year ending December 2013, some 526,000 people immigrated to the UK, not a statistically significant difference from 498,000 the previous year. Some 43,000 more EU citizens and 11,000 fewer non-EU citizens immigrated to the UK than in the previous year.
In the same period, 314,000 people emigrated from the UK, not a statistically significant difference from the 321,000 in the previous year.
There was a statistically significant increase in the number of people who came to the UK for work. In the year ending December 2013, some 214,000 immigrated for work, a statistically significant increase from 180,000 the previous year.
The official figures reveal that work remains as the most common reason for immigrating to the UK. Immigration for study (177,000) has remained steady.
In the year ending March 2014, work visas issued increased 10% (with skilled work visas up 18%).
Study visas also increased 6%, student visitor visas increased 14%, while there was a fall in family visas (-4%).
There was a 5% increase in asylum applications in the year ending March 2014 (23,731) compared with the previous 12 months (22,630), although well below the 2002 peak (84,132). The 5% was particularly driven by rises from Eritrea, Syria and Albania.