Despite the economic downturn, Ireland remains a popular destination for migrants with 118,650 more people arriving to live in Ireland than leaving, over the past five years.
According the Central Statistics Office, a high level of net inward migration may have been underestimated. On average some 23,730 people came to live in the State between 2006-2011.
Preliminary Census 2011 figures show that the high levels of net migration rates recorded by the previous census in 2006 have moderated.
The Central Statistics Office noted the migration patterns recorded by the Census 2011 are “markedly different” from the previous census results.
James Wickham, director of the employment research centre at Trinity College Dublin told the Irish Times he was not surprised by the results. According to Wickham, because migrants tend to live transitory lives, they are more difficult to track in official records.
“I’m also convinced there has been an overestimation in the reported emigration rates. There was an assumption all migrant workers would leave immediately but that hasn’t happened,” said Wickham.