Britain ‘in danger of losing talent and markets,’ warns European Commission vice-president Viviane Reding
Political leaders should stop blaming immigrants for the nation's ills and focus instead on improving the educational standards of young Britons, a European Commission vice-president has said.
Viviane Reding warned that Britain was harming its economic prospects by making it more difficult for talented foreigners to study and work in this country when there were skill shortages among UK-born workers.
“Politicians need to work on the quality of education and welfare, so that people in this country can find employment and enjoy reasonable social standards,” she said in a speech in Cambridge.
“Simply trying to project all problems on the supposed issue of too many foreigners moving into the country is certainly not the answer.”
Ms Reding took a swipe at the “talk of curbing immigration, of closing doors” across the political parties and protested that the “distorted” debate about Britain's place in the European Union was distracting from work on reform the bloc.
Expressing dismay over the sense that Britain is “gradually, inexorably drifting away” from the EU, she warned withdrawal would have disastrous consequences as 3.5m jobs in this country are linked to a single market of 500m customers.
“Leaving our powerful trading bloc would severely restrict British companies' access to this goldmine and make the UK a much less attractive trading partner for third countries,” Ms Reding said.
She argued that the Eurozone should integrate much more closely fiscally and politically to become “the United States of Europe”, with Britain not part of it, but a close ally.
Her comments will be seized on by Euro-sceptics as further evidence of the continuing drive in Brussels towards closer ties. However, Ms Reding painted a picture of a two-speed Europe, with Britain outside the central core, promoted by many British political leaders.
As Voltaire once said, “Ice cream is exquisite. What a pity it isn’t illegal”
- 1 Mother fed her daughter tapeworms to make her skinny for beauty pageant
- 3 Crystal Palace next manager latest: Palace consider Ally McCoist - EXCLUSIVE
- 4 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
- 5 Tim Sherwood column: 'It started as a three-horse race but turned into the Grand National'
'Alien thigh bone' on Mars: Excitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
West poised to join forces with Assad in face of Islamic State
Pamela Anderson rejects ice bucket challenge because of ALS experiments on animals: 'Mice had holes drilled into their skulls'
James Foley 'beheaded': Isis video shows militant with British accent 'execute US journalist' – as hunt begins for killer
ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Bin bag full of cats' heads discovered near Manchester's Curry Mile
Disgusting, frustrating, but intriguing: how the country really feels about its politicians
Negotiable: Harrington Starr: C#.NET VB6 Developer (Software Developer, Softwa...
£20000 - £27000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Service Desk Analyst- (Desktop Su...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Service Desk Analyst - (Active Di...
£30000 - £50000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Junior Quant Analyst - C++, Boost...