i Deputy Editor's Letter: Immigration, not actually costing Brits their jobs


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The Independent Online


David Cameron has been put in a difficult position following the accusation that a report into the impact of immigration on the British economy has been suppressed. Sources have revealed that the study shows the number of UK workers which remain unemployed due to migrants is “virtually nil”.

You may expect David Cameron to run cock-a-hoop through the streets, brandishing the report in the face of every Ukip member he can find. After all, it is the perfect antidote to Nigel Farage, who often cites the impact of rising immigration on the British workforce.

But the PM has a problem. He has committed the Government to reducing immigration to the “tens of thousands” before the next election. The pledge has already been dealt a blow after figures last week showed a rise to 212,000.

His Home Secretary Theresa May is also looking increasingly isolated after repeatedly quoting a statistic from a 2012 study that claimed “for every additional 100 immigrants … 23 British workers would not be employed”. Now, by publishing this report, the PM will be forced to abandon his target and perform yet another U-turn, or come up with a new argument.

But why do we need a target? In such a highly charged debate, by producing more facts and cutting rhetoric we can concentrate on building a fair system that keeps everyone happy. There are some who insist that “their job” has been taken by a foreign national. Likewise, studies also show that immigration is good for the economy.

So which is it? Let us see the figures so we can judge for ourselves and find a solution.


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