National Insurance: Migrants

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 7th March 2022.

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Photo of Lord Green of Deddington Lord Green of Deddington Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Stedman-Scott on 11 February (HL5761), what is (1) the underlying data issue affecting the calculation of the scale of National Insurance numbers issued to adult overseas arrivals from June 2021 onwards, (2) the scale of the uncertainty about the numbers involved, (3) the degree and manner in which this has affected and is likely to affect the future development of the Administrative-Based Migration Estimates, and (4) the period over which net migration estimates are likely to be affected.

Photo of Baroness Stedman-Scott Baroness Stedman-Scott The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

The decision was made to delay the November 2021 release of the National Statistics publication of National Insurance numbers allocated to adult overseas nationals following an investigation involving HMRC where a technical issue was identified which work is now underway to rectify. Once the work is complete and the data has been validated, we will notify users of our plans to publish the statistical back series in line with the UK Statistics Authority Code of Practice for Statistics.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is responsible for migration estimates and they announced in November 2021 their plan to include data from the DWP Registration And Population Interactions Dataset (RAPID) in their Administrative-Based Migration Estimates. The current RAPID data is not affected by this issue as it only covers the period to end March 2021.

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