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Foreign workers ‘benefit UK economy’

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05/01/2007

A recent Bank of England report stated that there is “little evidence” that recent migrant workers have made things more difficult for their British counterparts in terms of gaining employment and pushing down wages.

In terms of viewing employment as a UK investment, the report concluded that the migrants benefit the economy, and that the 0.8% rise in unemployment over the past 18 months has little to do with the arrival of around 500,000 Polish and ex-Soviet bloc workers.

In contradiction to reports by various pressure groups that many of the immigrants came to claim benefits, the report said that very few arrived for this reason and that the primary reason was for their own saving and investment purposes.

“There was little or no evidence to suggest that the new migrants have come to the UK to claim or receive benefits,” the report said. “They have also lowered the natural rate of unemployment by making the workforce more adaptable and mobile.”

The report also pointed out that population growth has been “extremely low” in the UK in comparison with other countries in the last 30 years. The UK population has increased 7% in that time, while the US went up by 42%, Spain 25% and France 18%.

 

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