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Reasons for immigration to Northern Ireland

Updated: Dec 6, 2023

Migration is the movement of people from one country to another country. There are many reasons why people migrate.

Immigration is the movement of people from other countries into a country. So when a person, or group of people from another country move into Northern Ireland, they are immigrants. They immigrate for a variety of reasons, including:


Better employment opportunities

  • People move to another country in search of work or because employment conditions may be better in Northern Ireland than in their home country.

  • Financial stability and better future prospects will encourage a person to immigrate to Northern Ireland, especially if the person will get paid higher wages.


Higher standard of living

  • People may move to Northern Ireland because it has a higher standard of living than their home country. It may offer better housing, social and health care and education. It may be a more attractive environment to live in.

  • Northern Ireland may offer better health care provision than their home country. This may include free health care.

  • Northern Ireland may have a better welfare and support service which may also entitle the person to financial benefits and access to accommodation.

Educational opportunities

  • People may move to Northern Ireland because their home country may not provide the education or standard of education the person requires.

  • A person moves to Northern Ireland to study the course they want or because they believe the country offers a better education.

To follow loved ones

  • Often families and friends will follow loved ones who have moved to Northern Ireland and want to be close to them.


Facing persecution

  • People may be part of a group who are discriminated against and persecuted because of their political or religious views. Their lives may be in danger. They may move to Northern Ireland to be safe.


Escaping war

  • It may not be safe for the person and their family to live in their home country because of conflict and/or human rights abuses. Their lives may be in danger. They move to live in Northern Ireland because they want to feel safe.


Escape natural disasters

People may want to move as a result of natural disasters, where their homes have been destroyed by earthquakes, fires or flooding and they want to live in Northern Ireland where natural disasters are not an issue.

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