The number of EU nationals living in Britain has plunged to 3.5million - the lowest level since 2015.
Thousands of EU nationals left the country during the coronavirus pandemic, figures released today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) confirmed.
And next year's statistics could be lower still as almost 60,000 EU citizens missed the deadline to apply to live and work in the UK after Brexit last month.
The last time there were so few EU nationals living in the UK was 2015, when there were 3.1million. In the last five years the numbers shot up to a peak of 3.7million in 2017 - before falling again amid then pandemic.
Some 79,000 EU nationals left Britain between September 2019 and September 2020, according to the data.
Jay Lindop, Director of the Centre for International Migration, said: 'Our best estimates show that while non-UK born and non-British populations remained broadly stable in 2020, the number of people living in the UK with EU nationality fell.'
Thousands of EU nationals left the country during the coronavirus pandemic, figures released today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) confirmed
Ms Lindop stressed it was difficult to compare the figures with previous years because of the impact of coronavirus on how