London, Nov 29 (IANS) The number of foreign students coming to Britain, particularly from countries like India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, has fallen by around 19,000, says a new British government report.
However, the number of foreign students coming from Pakistan rose from 20,000 to 30,000, the Telegraph cited the report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) as saying.
Drops across other countries, in particular from India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, saw the overall number of foreign students fall from 232,000 to 213,000, the report said.
The number of migrants who came for work−related reasons also went down, falling from 194,000 to 177,000.
In percentage figures, the number of foreign students was down eight percent, the number of foreign workers went down nine percent and the overall number of migrants coming from outside the European Union fell seven percent.
Immigration Minister Mark Harper said the figures showed that the government's tough polices were taking effect and ministers were "bringing immigration back under control".
However, Sarah Mulley, associate director at the Institute for Public Policy Research think tank, warned that the fall in the number of foreign students would come at a "significant economic cost".
Some 296,000 migrants from outside the EU came to Britain last year, down from 317,000 the previous year, the figures showed.
But there were significant rises in the number of foreign students coming from China and Pakistan.
After India, China became the second most common country for all migrants, fuelled by 40,000 foreign students coming last year compared to 25,000 the previous year.
Emigration from Britain however rose, up to 353,000 from 336,000. The number of people leaving the country for a definite job went up to 127,000 from 108,000 the previous year.