New study predicts migration and birth rates will lead to dramatic rise in numbers across continent. Figures in a new report suggest a stark east-west divide, with the Muslim share of the UK’s population rising from 6.3 per cent in 2016 to 16.7 per cent in one scenario. The study by the Pew Research Centre concludes that Europe’s Muslim population would continue to grow over the next several decades even if immigration to the continent were halted.
Under the ‘zero migration’ scenario, Muslims would make up 7.4 per cent of Europe’s population by 2050 compared to the 4.9 per cent they comprised last year. Researchers say that’s mostly because the birthrate for Muslims is generally higher than for other Europeans. Countries including Belgium, France and Italy will see the biggest change in the ‘zero migration’ scenario because they have young Muslim populations.