Number of EU nationals working in UK down by 16 pct since start of COVID-19 pandemic: ONS

Source: Xinhua| 2020-11-29 21:54:27|Editor: huaxia

LONDON, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- The number of European Union (EU) nationals working in Britain has plunged by 16 percent since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, Britain's Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed.

An estimated 1.87 million citizens of EU countries were working in the country between July and September this year, down 364,000 on the equivalent period last year, said the ONS.

Meanwhile, the number of overseas workers from outside the EU also fell by 65,000, representing a 5 percent fall, to 1.29 million, said the ONS.

Without giving detailed explanation, the ONS said the "significant disruption to worldwide travel" caused by the COVID-19 pandemic was a key factor in the changes.

Commenting on the decline, the London-based Evening Standard newspaper said "the figures appear to suggest, however, that the major impact of the coronavirus restrictions on sectors such as hospitality, which have traditionally employed many Europeans, are likely to have resulted in many either returning home or failing to come here because of limited opportunities and the prospect of quarantine."

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced last Monday a "tougher" tiered system of coronavirus restrictions to replace England's current lockdown when it ends on Dec. 2.

England is currently under a month-long national lockdown, the second of its kind since the coronavirus outbreak in Britain, in a bid to quell the resurgence of coronavirus.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States are racing against time to develop coronavirus vaccines. Enditem