Two million of brightest Brits quit the UK

Are working professionals giving up on the UK? New Office for National Statistics numbers show that in the 10 years up to 2011 almost 2m people between 25 and 44 threw in the towel for new shores. Part of the reason is a more mobile professional workforce.

But there are also concerns that the UK is being drained of younger brains wanting a better life.%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%

Had enough?

Count the drawbacks to UK living: huge living costs, especially when it comes to housing. Wages that have not kept up with inflation. Grim congestion in city centres. High cost of travel, be it replenishing the car's fuel tank or the soaring expense of train tickets.

Plus high education costs. Rubbish weather, often. Worries about home-grown immigration. The list is lengthy and well-known.

"In short, our most economically active are leaving to apply their talents elsewhere," writes Enfield North MP Nick de Bois in the Telegraph. "The figures show that they are, in the main, heading towards growth economies and warmer climes."

MP de Bois claims many who are leaving will typically come from an engineering, pharmaceutical or creative background.


However Gerwyn Davies, Public Policy Adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development claims UK emigration should be supported. "It's an international phenomenon. The higher skilled often emigrate aboard. It's something to be celebrated. We live in a globalised world with increasing growth from emerging markets and that's recognised by jobseekers and employers.

He goes on: "The real question is how many will come back? I'd hazard that many will come back. One of the weaknesses of the UK is that not enough people have spent time abroad, particular in Asia. As far as immigration [to the UK] it's generally accepted that immigrants do tend to be more highly educated than average worker - that's true across the globe."

Second thoughts for older people?

According to the World Bank, the UK ranks eighth highest in the world in terms of the number of its nationals living abroad. However, it's worth reiterating that emigration from the UK has not been successful for all - often for older people.

Although a surge in house prices have enabled many Brit property owners to sell up and live more cheaply abroad, many have seen their quality of life suffer since the financial crisis and the fall in the value of the pound.

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Two million of brightest Brits quit the UK
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