Roma Population in EU Accession Countries: Possible Migration to UK

House of Lords written question – answered on 12th February 2004.

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Photo of Lord Marlesford Lord Marlesford Conservative

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they can estimate the number of Roma people who are citizens of the 10 countries which are to accede this year to the European Union; and what proportion of them (a) are eligible; and (b) are expected to move to the United Kingdom.

Photo of Baroness Scotland of Asthal Baroness Scotland of Asthal Minister of State, Home Office, Minister of State (Home Office) (Criminal Justice and Offender Management)

Europe's Roma population is estimated at between 7 million and 9 million. Nearly 80 per cent of these Roma live in European Union accession countries.

Current member states, including the UK, cannot discriminate against any new member state or citizens of a specific accession state. Under the Accession Treaty nationals from all of the 10 new member states joining the EU on 1 May will have the right to travel freely across the European Union allowing them to visit, live and study in any other member state.

While predictions are extremely difficult to make, Home Office commissioned research looked at a number of independent studies into migration flows into the UK after enlargement and concluded that there will not be a massive increase from current levels.

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