Following the publication of the latest immigration statistics, the Island’s MP, Andrew Turner, has said that net migration to the UK at its current levels is unsustainable and puts enormous pressures on housing, infrastructure and public services.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has published the latest immigration statistics, the first figures published since the EU referendum on 23rd June. The figures demonstrate that immigration is still soaring and net immigration (long-term immigrants balanced against the number of long-term emigrants), at 335,000 is close to an all-time high and is more than 3 times the Government’s target to reduce net migration to below 100,000 a year. The total number of immigrants was at a record 650,000.
For the first time the most common country of previous residence for EU citizens was Romania, who now account for 1 in 10 of all migrants.
Responding to the figures the Minister of State for Immigration, Robert Goodwill MP, restated the Government’s commitment to bring net migration to a sustainable level. Furthermore, Mr Goodwill confirmed that migration will be a key priority in the upcoming negotiations on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
The Island’s MP, Andrew Turner commented on the figures:
“Net migration into the UK was 335,000 in the year ending in June – that is an increase over 12 months equivalent to the number of people living in Portsmouth and Gosport. This is totally unsustainable and puts enormous pressures on housing, infrastructure and public services. It also changes communities and threatens social cohesion.
“We are seeing historical changes in levels of immigration, and the number of EU citizens now moving to the UK is the most significant increase. A majority claim work as their main reason for moving, but as many as 43% of the EU citizens coming to the UK do not have a job waiting for them. The Eurozone is still lurching from crisis to crisis, while the UK is the fastest growing advanced economy – that is an enormous pull-factor, along with our education, health and welfare systems, which are relatively generous compared to poorer EU countries.
“We have promised to take back control over our borders, and the voters sent a clear message that is what they wanted on 23rd June. It is clear that immigration can only be controlled once we are outside the EU, and we need to get on with achieving that.”