THE number of foreign passport holders in the UK has smashed the five million mark for the first time.
It has soared by 612,000 alone in the past four years — equivalent to the population of Glasgow, according to figures published yesterday.
The highest proportion are from Poland with nearly 750,000, more than double India in second.
The stats came as the PM’s bid to reduce immigration in crunch EU talks went up in smoke.
Business chiefs also slammed the Government’s target to cut net migration to below 100,000 a year.
Figures showed one in 13 people in the UK at the start of 2014 held a foreign passport — 7.9 per cent of the population.
The overall total was 5,047,000 — up from 4,435,000 in 2010 — with 2.6million EU citizens plus 2.4million from outside.
There were 748,207 Poles, 347,732 Indians and 336,780 from Ireland.
The figures from Eurostat also include 196,565 from Pakistan, 136,947 from Romania, 110,016 from Nigeria and 92,248 Chinese.
The proportion here is higher than France where it is 6.3 per cent while Sweden has 7.2 per cent. But it is below Germany’s 8.7 per cent.
Tory MP Steve Baker, who wants Britain to leave the EU, said: “While the EU appears to be playing down EU migration, many British people will regard with astonishment the news that nearly 8 per cent of people living in the UK are from overseas — with half of them from the EU.”
The Institute of Directors yesterday branded the Government’s target to cut net migration from outside the EU to below 100,000 a year as “bizarre and unachievable”.
The cross-party Home Affairs Committee also said a cap on skilled workers from outside the EU was having “no effect” in cutting overall migration — as employers were forced to recruit from EU countries.
Figures last month showed net migration had hit a record of 336,000 in the year to June.
Refugees to Europe will top 1m
THE number of refugees entering Europe will reach the “extraordinary” one million mark on Tuesday officials declared yesterday.
The International Organisation for Migration said nearly 991,000 have already made their way from the Middle East and Africa. More than 806,000 of them have entered Greece.
Spokesman Joel Millman said: “We see flows so strong this late in the year that perhaps by Tuesday, the IOM estimates the million mark will pass. This is extraordinary.”
EU border agency Frontex this week said there had been 1.55million illegal crossings to its territories this year, including from non-EU nations.
Snubbed on 4-year benefit bar
EUROPEAN leaders killed off David Cameron’s key demand to stop migrants claiming benefits for four years — and proposed a watered-down “brake” instead.
Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker was considering a plan to let Britain temporarily block in-work benefits for EU migrants.
But the brake could only be used if Britain proves its public services are being overwhelmed. Any decision would rest with Brussels.
Tory Eurosceptic Bernard Jenkin blasted the brake as a “meaningless concession”.
The PM yesterday insisted the four-year plan — outlined in the Tory manifesto — was still on the table.