It’s official: the immigration clampdown is hurting British business

Pandering to anti-migrant sentiment is hurting the British economy.

Pandering to anti-migrant sentiment is hurting the British economy

In seeking to see off the threat from UKIP, David Cameron’s government has put a great deal of stock in appearing ‘tough’ on immigration.

Back in 2010 Cameron argued that it was “perfectly possible” to halve net migration without damaging companies or the economy.

Four years on and the results of this assumption are starting to come in; and it doesn’t bode well for the coalition.

According to a new study carried out by the University of Oxford’s Migration Observatory for the Financial Times, the number of highly skilled migrants from outside Europe fell by more than a third since between 2011 and 2013.

There were 28,000 fewer highly skilled migrants in the UK last year compared to 2011, a drop of just over 10 per cent.

As the FT (£) reports:

“While researchers stop short of blaming policy changes for the decline in skilled specialists from Asia, Africa and the Americas, the findings are clear: the reduction in non-EU hires between 2011 and 2013 has been mirrored by a corresponding 53 per cent rise in highly skilled migrants from older EU countries such as France and Germany.”

Particularly telling is a comment in the FT’s by the director general of the CBI John Cridland:

“I certainly pick up in international markets that there’s now a perception that the UK isn’t as open to highly skilled migrants and investors and entrepreneurs.”

In April 2011 the government abolished Labour’s ‘highly skilled’ visa route and introduced an annual cap on the number of skilled workers allowed into the UK. They also put an end to the post-study work visa, which had previously allowed overseas graduates to stay in Britain to look for work for two years after finishing their studies.

Responding to the findings, the business secretary Vince Cable told the FT that the net migration target was “not government policy”. He added that it “clearly had a damaging impact on UK plc by reducing the talent pool available to companies based here”.

Despite previously insisting that Britain is ‘still open for business’, it appears that pandering to anti-migrant sentiment is directly hurting the British economy.

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38 Responses to “It’s official: the immigration clampdown is hurting British business”

  1. Patonback

    What a load of old tosh. We are in the middle of a population explosion fuelled by excessive immigration, yet all these analysts want to do is import more and more people. Ever heard of skills training?. Do it. By the time we have a vote on the EU, at the present rate , we will have another one million people here plus a surge in births. Absolute madness. The freedom of movement EU rules mean right now, that we cannot pick and choose who comes here. Until that changes, we get all sorts.

  2. TruthBeatsLies

    But White Europeans are hardly any problem at all. Most of them don’t even like the UK. They only come here to work hard (which most of them do!) perfect their English (which most of them do) and earn enough money to head back home or go to America – or both…! Which most of them do…!!!

    What I want to know is WHY can’t we stop the influx of 3Rd-Worlders…? Especially from Africa and the Indian Sub-Continent… most of whom send birth-rates up through the roof, seldom even bother to learn English and have absolutely no intention whatsoever of EVER going home…!!!

  3. Kay

    Umm. Disappointed to see that no evidence is put forward to back up the claim that British business is hurting. Even Vince Cable trots out an unsubstantiated non-sequitur that it “clearly had a damaging impact on UK plc by reducing the talent pool etc” It’s not clear at all, Vince – and try telling that to the people graduating from University or leaving college this year.

    I’d like to see the Left change the record on the economic benefits of immigration and engage with the immigration-sceptics arguments, meaningfully. For instance, I haven’t found a single person convinced by arguments such as: “If we could only get a few hundred thousand skilled workers in each year, our economy would grow by 0.5%, in London, Oxford and Cambridge, if we’re lucky!”

    So James, don’t disappoint me. Which businesses are hurting? How? Where are the vacancies? Where are our Universities and colleges falling down? What skills need shoring up?

  4. swatnan

    Its true that Society is change; just look at the streetscene and the diversity on it. To deny that change is to be a flat earther and climate change denier. To deny that change and not embrace it is to be a left behinder

  5. consciousness

    If ALL and ONLY Black countries in 1955 let hundreds of millions of non-Blacks into their countries and encouraged the non-Blacks to assimilate. Then 90 years later, Blacks are expected to be minorities in those countries; that’s not done by accident. It’s obviously a plan to wipe out the Black race. AKA genocide.
    This has been done to my people, White people. It’s GENOCIDE!

  6. EEG

    Any government that replaces the national people with foreign workers is a slave state diametrically opposed to socialism, period

  7. Lucy Sky Diamonds

    Its official: We dont care.

    Its official: Mass immigration is hurting British society.

    Oh dear. Leftfootforward backs capitalism when it suits!

    ‘There were 28,000 fewer highly skilled migrants in the UK last year compared to 2011, a drop of just over 10 per cent.’

    So? Ever heard of training people?

    Yet how many unskilled people from the Ecame here?

  8. Lucy Sky Diamonds

    80% of the nation are leftbehinders then.

  9. Guest

    Ah yes, skills. “How to grovel for pennies from the rich”.

    And yes, you’re here. Go back to hateland.

  10. Guest

    Ah, the far right genocide mongers here to try and murder everyone not just like themselves.

  11. Leon Wolfeson

    You got under 10% of the population, in the recent voting. Keep making up dream figures, though.

  12. Leon Wolfeson

    Great, since they are not being replaced, and immigration per scientific studies only lower the wages of other recent immigrants. The blame for Britain’s economic woes lies entirely with the domestic economic policies of the Coalition.

    Thanks for admitting, for the record, we’re not a slave state. Also, socialism supports free movement, not national boundaries. (I’m not a socialist and I know that!)

  13. Leon Wolfeson

    Well, you’re here…as you think it’s “capitalist” to allow workers to cross borders.

    And that you think your kind of hate is trainable…heh. (And no, you can’t replace 30 year veterans with new Graduates, and many bright-but-skilled people are now avoiding University here, since they don’t intend to lose money over their working life by doing so).

    YOU are one person, not a multiple personality. YOU are attacking British society using the Other as an excuse.

  14. Leon Wolfeson

    Universities are closing departments left, right and centre, because of the drop in foreign students. Internationally-ranked departments, even.

    Of course you want the left to become isolationist, and pro massive wage drops like you, as you blame immigrants, for the government’s terrible entirely domestic economic policies.

    Running round trying to “shore up” skills, when bright kids are avoiding University thanks to the fees, when people are being refused VISA’s for the UK when America (of all places) are admitting them on O1 “superstar” VISA’s…

    You also fail to mention that closing the borders would smash trade and wages.

  15. Leon Wolfeson

    Yes, of course your racism is special and pure and true. As you blame people who don’t look just like you for domestic economic problems.

    History repeats.

  16. consciousness

    No we just want some land homogenous to ourselves, were we can escape the inevitable “Blended Future” that anti-Whites like you encourage in ALL white countries.
    Africans have a home, Asians have a home, and under international law, white people are entitled to a home as well.
    What kind of HATER would oppose that?

  17. Kay

    I support immigration. My parents were immigrants. I find that I am increasingly isolated in my views and that more and more of my circle are sceptics rather than anti-immigration. Articles like this don’t help the Left formulate a convincing case for immigration, with false promises in the headline and a laughably lazy final sentence.

    My main point is that this article in “Left Foot Foward – Evidence Based Political Blogging” (sic) is devoid of any evidence that Business is hurting because of the reduced numbers of non-EU skilled migrants. If the evidence is there, let’s shout about it!

  18. Leon Wolfeson

    The evidence is in the scientific studies which have shown that immigrants only hurt the wages of other recent (less than 5 year) immigrants.

    Belabouring the point simply gives the right ammunition. If Labour had a clue, they’d be hammering on the entirely domestic ecomomic fails of the Coalition – but instead they’re promising to follow their financial plans.

    The “case” is simple – unless you like isolation and poverty for the 99%, there’s no alternative. Plenty of the rich are fine with that, as they’re in the 1%. That’s really all there is to it.

  19. Cathy Wilson

    Strain on housing and public services, untold damage to our local environment and turning the UK into a concrete jungle to house millions of third world migrants into an over-policed surveilance state containing a tiny percentile of hyper-rich globalist elites and masses upon masses of underemployed surplus to requirements – sound like fun? Then vote LIB LAB CON, otherwise vote UKIP.

  20. Guest

    Guys i Just wonder to say that thanks to the EU your economies getting well, otherwise your country could drop down in a huge crisis..moreover i would mention most of the Brighton doesn’t have the UK to undesrstand what is really happening! So just take it easy!there’s a lot of jb and bread for everybody!!!

  21. Guest

    And you say over and over you want to murder everyone who dosn’t look like you, right. You claim “rights” to purge and kill. The usual, you’re a good little hater fanatic.

    And no, you’re not a “native people” under the UN definition. So sorry you’re just in the supermajority, white man.

  22. Guest

    Ah yes, voting for smashing trade, and isolation. For a banker who’s been quite open about his allegiance to the 1%. Whose plan involves massive poverty for the 99%, as you blame immigrants for a structural housing crisis (so the peons can expect to live in the streets in your Isolated Kingdom, as you blame more and more targets for things not improving after the borders are smashed shut on the economy).

    You are indeed for turning Britain into the third-world, and you’ll “immigrate” to Monaco while the peons labour for you here.

  23. itdoesntaddup

    Actually it’s not official. I wrote to the authors of the report as follows:

    “I read your paper with interest. However, an alternative hypothesis occurs to me – namely that the reduction in highly skilled inward migration had little or nothing to do with immigration controls, but rather was a direct consequence of changes in economic activity – particularly in the banking/financial services and oil and gas sectors.
    The governments consulted on their changes to immigration rules, and could have set them to give the appearance of “doing something”, while being careful in practice to do no more than was happening in any case.
    Thus the policy followed the reality, rather than creating it – and was created for appearances to appease certain voters. That the visa cap has not proved a constraint on skilled migration surely supports this view. I note you are careful to say that your research cannot preclude the idea that economic forces are responsible for the changes.”

    Carlos Vargas-Silva replied:

    “Thanks for the feedback.

    We cannot discard that as a possibility. It is not possible to say how much is migration policy vs the economy and other factors.”

  24. treborc1

    Then how about giving me a try I’m sure I could work at something, sadly I’ve given up trying., me and my trusty work horse my wheelchair.

    The issue was once Blair opened up the doors and like it or not he did, to him it was a way of controlling Blue collar working wages especially in the self employment area, I gave up thinking immigration is good. The reason our universities are struggling is simple they are to costly for people when they can go to pretty good one these days in China and India or France of Germany.

  25. treborc1

    yes it sounds racist because it is….

  26. treborc1

    Your mixed up, your better voting BNP after that tirade.

  27. itdoesntaddup

    According to HESA, foreign students have reduced from 435,000 to 425,000, or by 10,000 while overall student numbers declined from 2,497,000 to 2,340,000, or by 157,000. So it’s the fall in domestic student numbers that is causing departments to close – not the fall in overseas students.

  28. itdoesntaddup

    Precisely: increasing numbers of potential students are realising that university education is not likely to be worth it for them.

  29. Leon Wolfeson

    Suffice to say you’re assuming that the same universities are involved, and that the same profit is realised. Bad assumptions

    Places for UK students are subject to a cap, too…

  30. itdoesntaddup

    Suffice it to say I’m making no assumptions – simply quoting official statistics. Very few students realise a true profit for universities. Even the non-EU foreign ones are on average heavily subsidised by the block grant. £3.53bn in tuition fees for 300,000 is £11,433 per head. Block grant is £7bn out of total tuition costs of £18.7bn.

  31. Mike

    Actually, the current figures for immigrant arrivals is 4000 a week!
    By the time anyone gets round to giving us a referendum, this country will be unrecognisable.

  32. Dave Roberts

    Bad article James. You are using the usual lefty broad brush attitude that a shortage of skilled IT workers or doctors means that we must allow in everyone who wants to come. Just look at what is happening off the coast of Italy.

    An Iranian brain surgeon or a Chinese company bringing its people to start up a new factory do not equate to boatloads of Somalis or other sub Saharan refugees however much we might sympathise with their plight.

  33. Dave Roberts

    Well said Kay.

  34. Dave Roberts

    Actually most White Eastern Europeans do stay and apart from the few criminal elements, which you will get anywhere, they pay their way, learn English and integrate. Try the Whitechapel Rd in Tower Hamlets East London for the opposite. A little Somalia of almost entirely men, unemployed and with virtually no English

  35. PG

    That means that the education system is incapable of producing the necessary people , then the education system should be investigated and the people in charge replaced .

  36. consciousness

    You support the conditions that are leading to genocide via blending in ALL white countries. You want to make white people into minorities everywhere they have made their homes.
    What kind of HATER would want to do that to a whole race of people?

    You call me a hater and a fanatic, spread ridiculous lies that my people want to kill other peoples of this planet. Why would you say such wicked untruths?

    My people just want some homogeneous land, where we can guarantee our place on this planet for generations to come.

    As for your filthy lie regarding International Law, your actions in a genocide tribunal would be regarded as the dehumanization of a people. Dehumanization is one of the 8 stages of genocide.

    Why are you so anti-White?
    Why do you want to see a future with no white children in it?
    Diversity means chase the last white child down.
    Anti-racism is a code word for anti-White

  37. consciousness

    You spread misinformation in an attempt to justify White GeNOcide. It won’t work anymore anti-White.
    The people of the world are waking up to your evil lies and anti-White propaganda.

    How did you become so anti-White?
    Were you deprived of the love that you craved for as a child?
    I sympaphise with you I truly do. But the lack of affection shown to you, does not justify the hatred you bear towards my people, as we continue our struggle to raise awareness of our genocide.

    Anti-racism is a code word for anti-White

  38. consciousness

    So why encourage EVERY white person in ALL white countries to jump into the meltingpot of death?
    The end result will be no more white people.
    Why should we all look the same, where is the diversity in that?
    White people, my people, with there various eye colours, and diversity of hair colours, are entitled to be able to preserve themselves under International Law. Do you not agree? Is it only white people you advocate this genocide for or do you promote the genocide of all the worlds different races?
    Let’s destroy all the worlds different cultures too, not to forget religions.
    Then we can all be good obedient slaves in the New World Order. You’ve been played by the Long Con son and unless you wake up to this, you’re gonna lose the game.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-White

    Diversity is a code word for White GeNOcide

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