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UK population could double by 2081

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New figures from the UK Office of National Statistics (ONS) state that the population of Britain could soar to 108.7 million by 2081. The current population of the UK is 60.5 million.

The forecast took into account increased immigration, more births, and rising life expectancy. The 108.7 million estimate was the highest scenario -- other forecasts were released for different scenarios with the lowest population estimate at 64 million by 2081.

The ONS feels that the most likely scenario would place the British population at 85 million by 2081.

ONS estimated that 69 percent of Britain's future population growth will come directly or indirectly from immigration, including rising birth rates from new migrants.

Immigration Minister Liam Byrne said the facts showed the need for changes to the UK's immigration system.

"Frankly, it underlines the need for the swift and sweeping changes we are bringing to the immigration system in the next 12 months, which will include the introduction of an Australian-style, points-based system, so only those that Britain needs can come to work and study," he said.

"I think it shows we are right to set the points score for new migrants by considering not only the good of the economy but the realities of immigration's wider impact," he added.