National Records of Scotland

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Migration between Scotland and Overseas

Migration between Scotland and Overseas

Last updated: 25 September 2013

Note: A new method for allocating international out migration was implemented for mid-2012. More details of the changes can be found in our migration statistics Methodology section on this website. Care should be taken when comparing mid-2012 with previous years for areas within Scotland.


Migration between Scotland and overseas refers to people moving between Scotland and any country outside the UK.

This sort of migration, particularly when dealing with migrants leaving Scotland, is the most difficult to measure. The main source used in the National Records of Scotland (NRS) estimates of migration between Scotland and overseas is the International Passenger Survey (IPS). Use is also made of the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and GP registration information. More information on how these migration estimates are derived can be found in the migration statistics Methodology section of this website.

A number of other sources of international migration exist. These tend to cover only certain types of migrants. For example National Insurance Number (NINo) registrations can tell us something about migrants entering Scotland from overseas to work whilst the Worker Registration Scheme (WRS) data provides information on migrants entering Scotland from the A8 accession countries to work. Some more details on these sources can be found in the Other Useful Information section.

Available data

The tables below have been made available as Excel and can be viewed in Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF).

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The following tables are consistent with the migration figures used in NRS mid-year population estimates

In, out and net migration by age group between Scotland and overseas, 2001/02 to most recent
Excel     PDF)

In, out and net migration between NHS Board areas and overseas by sex, 2001/02 to most recent
Excel     PDF)

In, out and net migration between administrative areas and overseas, 2001/02 to latest
Excel     PDF)

Below are links to data available on the Office for National Statistics (ONS) website. Long-Term International Migration (LTIM) is a method used by ONS to estimate international migration to and from the UK. Further details of how the International Passenger Survey (IPS) and LTIM are used in NRS estimates of migration can be found in the Methodology section of this website.

Long-Term International Migration (LTIM) estimates

International Passenger Survey (IPS) estimates

Enquiries and Suggestions

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E-mail: [email protected]

If you have comments or suggestions that would help us improve our outputs or our standards of service please contact:

Kirsty MacLachlan, Senior Statistician, National Records of Scotland,
Room 1/2/3, Ladywell House, Ladywell Road, Edinburgh. EH12 7TF.
Telephone: (0131) 314 4242
E-mail: [email protected]

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