The U.K. reported its lowest unemployment rate in 43 years on Tuesday, but also a record drop in the number of EU nationals working in the country.
Between April and June this year, unemployment dipped to 4 percent, which was the lowest level since between December 1974 and February 1975, according to a report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The number of EU nationals employed in the country, meanwhile, fell by 86,000 to 2.28 million people — the largest annual decrease since the ONS began keeping such records in 1997.
During that same time period, the number of non-EU nationals with jobs increased by 74,000 to 1.27 million people. The number of working U.K. citizens also rose by 332,000 to 28.76 million people.
Matthew Percival, the head of employment for the Confederation of British Industry, told the Times that the government must preserve the working eligibility of EU nationals after Brexit. “And putting migration and mobility on the table when negotiating a new relationship with the EU will help secure the best deal,” he added.