The government’s approach to Immigration

 Knowing how important many of you think this issue is, I reproduce below the government’s account of what it has done so far to change the immigration system:

  • “The first ever permanent cap on non-EU work migrants has now been in place for a year. The limit has not been reached in any month since the cap came into effect, so the numbers are falling while necessary skilled workers are allowed in.


  • We have also reformed the student visa system – the largest route of entry.  116 licences to colleges have been revoked and another 179 licenses  suspended. The reforms include a new accreditation system for colleges; new rules on the standard of English required for students; new restrictions to limit students working and bringing dependants; and ending the post-study work option for all but the very brightest. The number of Tier 4 student visas issued has fallen by 19% in the second half of 2011, compared to the same period in 2010.


  • We have cut the automatic link between coming here to work and staying here permanently. Skilled temporary workers wanting to apply for settlement  have to be earning £35,000 per year or the going rate for their job, whichever is higher.


  • We will shortly set out measures to reform family immigration. A new minimum income requirement will also be introduced, to stop people coming here to live off benefits.  We will extend the probationary period before a non-EEA spouse or partner can apply for settlement from two to five years, which will have the effect of reducing access to benefits for those who have recently arrived.


As well as reforming routes of entry, we are also strengthening security at our border.  The UK Border Force is now a separate command within the Home Office under Chief Constable Brian Moore, with a clear focus on law enforcement.  

Each month we stop approximately 1,000 people who should be refused entry to the UK from even boarding a plane.  From this month, we will have advance sight of details of every passenger on non-EEA flights to the UK. This 100 per cent coverage, combined with our strict visa regime, means that all non-EEA passengers arriving from outside Europe will have been checked once, and many twice, before they reach the UK. This summer the border will be better protected than ever before, which is vitally important in an Olympic year.

We are also improving our immigration processes to continue to deliver better outcomes.


  • 60% of new asylum applicants now receive a decision in just 30 days.
  • Last year we removed over 4,500 foreign criminals.
  • We now start deportation action on foreign national prisoners 18 months before the end of their sentence.
  • We have started interviewing selected visa applicants to test their credibility.”




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  1. me
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    Could you kindly update this post with the levels of total immigration since the coalition took power?

  2. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    The key action is to say that brides and bridegrooms cannot be imported – or at any rate there is no automatic right of entry. Until you do that, you are not in control.

    Nevertheless, credit is due for the measures already taken.

    • Mark
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think you have looked at the statistics. Only around 8% of all immigrants come on a “family” basis. Whilst there has been some significant abuse with sham marriages, shutting the door on this route completely would do little to reduce overall numbers. There are many genuine marriages of UK citizens to overseas citizens that would easily meet the now defunct primary purpose test that your policy would seek to prevent. I would rather that test be restored.

      If you really wish to tackle the problem, then you should look elsewhere. Abuse of the student route is the most obvious: see my later post.

      Reducing the need for immigrant labour is the other main avenue of attack, and means a change of policy to emphasize making our own citizens rather more employable. That implies a radical shift in education and training priorities – perhaps this is starting to happen under Gove in schools, but nothing substantive is being attempted by Cable and Willetts, who seek to perpetuate useless degrees, and under the table routes for work related migration via Mode 4 that don’t even count in the LTIM statistics.

      • Bazman
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        We could deport anyone in a sham marriage earning less than 35k. Problem solved!

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted April 21, 2012 at 9:15 am | Permalink

        I’m sorry, but genuine marriages can be a problem too if the bride or bridgroom is imported. As Enoch said “Numbers are of the essence”. Therefore, we should identify those immigrant groups whose numbers are so large that they don’t need to integrate. They send money ‘back home’, they take holidays ‘back home’ – and who do they support at cricket tests?

  3. Bazzer
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

    It’s immigration from the EU that’s the problem!!!!!

    • Cliff. Wokingham
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:58 am | Permalink


      We saw a similar effect half a century ago. I grew up in London’s East End and we had huge levels of employment. Many people, from poorer parts of the UK, came down to our area to work in the docks. There were many people from Liverpool, Glasgow and Ireland where wages were not so high; simple supply and demand. London Transport even started to bring in people from the West Indies to fill the demand for staff. Those that came were here to work and improve their quality of life.

      We now effectively see the same thing happening; The EUSSR has, in effect, created a United States of Europe and we are seeing people from the poorer parts of the “nation” coming here for the same reasons those from Liverpool, Glasgow and Ireland came to East London all those years ago.

      There is however a major difference now compared to the situation in East London back then; we do not have a shortage of workers nor an abundance of jobs.

      We now have a situation where we have a far smaller need for unskilled manual workers due to technological advances; machines doing the work people used to do. We have many more women having to work, rather than stay at home to raise a family. We have many people from the EUSSR looking for work to improve their lives and those of their families back in their homelands.
      What this has done, again due to simple supply and demand, has kept wages in the lesser skilled and specialist sector, artificially low and this has driven the indigionous unskilled population into state dependency. Again, simple suppy and demand.

      The other problem we have that has created the perfect storm so to speak, is that with the very high costs and the levels of red tape, rules and regulations, we are unable to compete on a world stage and therefore our very “success” will, in the end, destroy us.

      • uanime5
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

        That’s why minimum wage is so important in ensuring that wages are not pushed too low by immigrants.

        • Spartacus
          Posted April 20, 2012 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

          The minimum wage doesn’t take into account Housing or Rent inflation caused largely through mass immigration. Gone are the days when a ordinary working person could purchase a home at 3 times wages, and also raise a family – the 1980s for example, when immigration was controlled and inflation was also controlled and workers saw real growth in real incomes.
          The minimum wage of 6.10 ph for a full 40 hr week results in a gross wage of around 11,740. And real incomes are falling after inflation is taken into account.

      • rose
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

        Fifty years ago the taxpayer didn’t top up low wages.

        • Bazman
          Posted April 20, 2012 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

          And look how they lived. Would anyone say they lived better?

          • rose
            Posted April 20, 2012 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

            They didn’t have to compete for jobs with nearly so many immigrants, and their employers had to pay all the wages they got. Now employers can pay a pittance, and pass the bulk of the cost of keeping a family on to the taxpayer; and they have no sense of responsibility about employing local young people either. The biggest employers aren’t even local themselves.

  4. James Reade
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    There was me thinking you were all in favour of the government doing less interfering in the day to day lives of ordinary folk and businesses.

    I’m glad you’re making it even more onerous and hard for genuine people to settle here in the UK, such as my wife. Canadian, not particularly academic but committed to this country as she absolutely loves the place, she had to sit through some pointless “Life in the UK test” with associated stress and cost to the taxpayer (which could be passed by an academic type who didn’t care for the UK, note), and we have had to fork out thousands over the last few years dealing with the UKBA to simply allow her to stay.

    Interesting that apparently your cap hasn’t been breached. Why is it then that someone I know working in London had to leave the country because the firm he was working for received their quote of non-EEA workers in 2010 of zero?!

    I’m glad you really put a lot of time into passing on this propaganda from the government.

    I also enjoy your shameless about-face when it comes to immigration. Let’s get government out of our way everywhere apart from immigration where let’s get the government even more in our way than ever before. Ever thought that this might also be contributing to depressed economic growth, along with your usual excuses regarding tax levels?

    • javelin
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:05 am | Permalink

      The Government *are* interfering in peoples lives by not controlling immigration.

      • James Reade
        Posted April 23, 2012 at 8:09 am | Permalink

        That is so messed up it’s hard to comprehend. The government could simply get out of the way of businesses trying to hire the best people. By setting up any restriction on who they can employ, they are getting in the way. Very simple.

    • alan jutson
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:24 am | Permalink


      So would you prefer a completely open door policy, with no limits, and no controls at all ?

      • James Reade
        Posted April 23, 2012 at 8:10 am | Permalink

        Why not? Don’t you want firms to be able to hire the best people? Don’t you want government out of your way, not telling you who you can and cannot employ based on a passport?

        Or would you prefer we keep protecting our mediocre lazy pampered young people by keeping out those who would happily do their job without complaining or shirking?

    • stred
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:33 am | Permalink

      Deregulation is needed for enterprise or where it is just to remove pointless laws.

      Immigration control is needed because the UK is overcrowded with a badly educated young workforce, sitting on their backsides while immigrants do the work. Controls should not affect Commonwealth exchange as most go home. It should not affect genuine marriages.

      The controls are not unique to the UK. Just try overstaying or working in Canada for a few days. They put you on the next flight home, quite rightly.

      Maybe you could get a job at McGill with your talents?

      • James Reade
        Posted April 23, 2012 at 8:13 am | Permalink

        Thanks stred. I chose with my wife to stay and work in the UK, not Canada, as is my right. But governments all over the world don’t seem to think that firms or workers have the right to choose who to employ any more.

        Instead they pander to those like you who make unsubstantiated, unprovable claims like “the UK is over-crowded”. Really? I drove past 60 miles of countryside on my way here today, it was doing nothing. There weren’t people there. Overcrowded, really?

        The fact that our layabout youths are lazy is their problem and they will suffer. Why do you still want to protect them?

        And I don’t doubt that the UK is alone in implementing greater impediments to economic growth. Doesn’t mean I can’t bemoan it and point out the shameful inconsistency in all of your positions, most notably John’s.

  5. Lord Blagger
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    We will shortly set out measures to reform family immigration. A new minimum income requirement will also be introduced, to stop people coming here to live off benefits


    Spot the loop hole.

    Why didn’t you make the law, if you come here you have no entitlement to public support?

    The income test only applies at entry, and is opened to being fiddled.

    Why is the limit set so low? You spend 11K per person per year. That needs an income of over 40K to break even. The threshold last time I looked is in the 20s.

    Why doesn’t that threshold include dependants?

  6. Sue
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    However, that doesn’t stop the mass movement of EU citizens from East Europe and the Med coming over and claiming exactly what they can get their hands on. They only have to sell the Big Issue for a few months and can then bring over their brood of children for us to support.

    The EU has essentially ordered us to treat other EU citizens the same as the ones in the UK.

    Yet, the Germans are cutting everyone’s entitlement to benefits.

    As usual, our government adheres to every rule whilst the rest of Europe ignores the EU.

    Tell me, why is that?

    • javelin
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:07 am | Permalink

      Because the stupid lawyers have too much power, because the stupid politicians give the lawyers too much power.

  7. Lord Blagger
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    OK, I’ve checked the income details

    From April 2016 ….

    Why isn’t the threshold being introduced immediately?

    • lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      Anyway it refers to “the going rate for their job, whichever is higher” the going rate is of course largely determined by the supply of suitable immigrant labour!

  8. lifelogic
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    “Skilled temporary workers wanting to apply for settlement have to be earning £35,000 per year or the going rate for their job, whichever is higher.”

    Give the mess the government has put the economy in and the numbers coming in then that will be not that much higher than the minimum wage then I assume? Perhaps circa £20,000 outside the South East. Even someone on £35,000 with a wife and 2 or more children is probably a net liability to the state sector in the short term (taking into account tax, NI, family allowance, schools, health and all the rest of the money that the state wastes on pointless wars, green tosh, pointless civil servants and the like.

    • lifelogic
      Posted April 18, 2012 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

      I met someone a few weeks ago who has recently left the UK taking their considerable taxes with them. The main reason they left was that they could not get any certainty, from HMRC (or their advisers) on a future large tax issue. They sensibly decided it was best to go just to avoid the uncertainty.

      Why is HMRC so keen to shoot itself in the foot in this way. Why does it not behave pragmatically in the interests of maximising tax revenues? It is surely incompetent and not acting in the interest of the taxpayer. Quite apart from the fact they so often cannot be bothered to answer the phone, return calls or reply to letters.

      • Roger Farmer
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:37 am | Permalink

        Re Lifelogic

        HMRC ,on it’s own internal admission has the lowest level of morale against all other government departments. Little wonder when at the highest level there is little tax knowledge. Guess what their next boss comes from a failed career at the Border Agency. Can you believe it.

        • lifelogic
          Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:25 am | Permalink

          I used to find them relatively efficient (relative to the rest of the state sector) about 15-20 years ago – no longer alas.

          • zorro
            Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

            HM C+E was a respected department until it was Gordonised in 2004-5 and merged into a super monster…

            UKBA was also a creation of Gordon, and Lin Homer has recently taken over at HMRC. But do not fear the appointment had the full backing of Osborne and Cameron because of her strong track record!!


          • rose
            Posted April 21, 2012 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

            Another formerly respectable institution which has been Browned is the Charity Commission.

      • stred
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:59 am | Permalink

        HMRC have been receiving performance related pay for maximising take.

        I met someone who came here 30 years ago to escape a communist dictatorship and would have faced 25 years in jail if they had returned. Their house in the native country was taken and trashed. When the family finally got it back, HMRC tried to apply CGT without indexation to a property vacated compulsarily 35 years before with no value, around 4 times the rate after inflation. Fortunately they backed off after help from an excellent conservative MP.

  9. alan jutson
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    Pleased they are doing something, I await to see how effective, but surely our problem is also the free movement of labour within the EU is it not.

    • stred
      Posted April 20, 2012 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

      They are pleased to hit easy targets such as long term genuine refugees with CGT, but do nothing about the huge black market in east european cash work.

  10. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    What a load of waffle – and I could just imagine that incompetent Damian Green saying it. Not one statistic about immigration numbers. Why? Well perhaps it is because of what the figures published in the Guardian sourced from the ONS actually show :
    Entering Leaving Difference
    Y/E Dec 09 528,000 337,000 191,000
    Y/E Mar 10 553,000 335,000 218,000
    Y/E Jun 10 548 ,000 316,000 232,000
    Y/E Sep 10 566,000 312,000 254,000
    Y/E Dec 10 553,000 310,000 243,000
    Y/E Mar 11 543,000 308,000 236,000

    Your party said : “It is our aim to reduce the level of net migration to sustainable levels down from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands within the lifetime of this parliament.” On this performance there is no chance of achieving that obejective. Another failure to deliver on an election pledge. Do you seriously think we should vote Conservative given all your failures?

  11. Winston Smith
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    Spot the Central Office email! All very well, but what about EU immigration? What about non-EU immigration via the EU? For example, London has the largest population of Somalians outside of Somalia, many of whom arrived via the EU. On 1 Jan 2014, Bulgarians and Romanians will have free movement and the right to work in the UK. Hundreds of thousands will flock here. They both have notoriously porous borders and corrupt bureaucracies. What are you going to do about that?

  12. Pedro
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    All these are solid moves to close loopholes and defend the leaky borders of our realm. We are an island so it really shouldn’t be that tough.

    But what about the potentially culture changing mass immigration deliberately pursued by the last government. People like to point at Eastern European immigration but that has only been 20% of all immigration in the last twelve years (migrationwatch) and we can’t do much about that. At least, the proximity of Europe means that those Europeans who have come and settled have a broadly similar sense of religion and culture and birth rate.

    On average UK birthrates are at 1.9 babies per couple (of course in Spain it is even lower at 1.1) , immigrants from (some non EU countries-ed) have birthrates of 4.53. In 2010 according to ONS, 1 in4 or 174,174, of all UK births in 2009 were to a mother born overseas. This means that in a generation the voting franchise in this country will be altered and in two generations, who knows. The problem with multi-culturalism and unfettered immigration is that people are supported to pursue their own cultures once they are here to the detriment of British culture. Until recently, precious little British history was actually taught in schools.

    So while I commend the efforts of the present coalition, to stem the tide (we are an island, surely it can’t be too hard, Australia seems to do rather well at this) surely the question is how can we repatriate those illegals already on our shores and ensure that those who have rights to remain (god bless human rights act) actually have some respect for the communities that nurture them and support them?

    Reply: Many migrants are enthusiastic UK citizens who comne here to enjoy our culture.

  13. Tony (Somerset)
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    But we cannot prevent unlimited immigration from EU countries.

    • Bazman
      Posted April 18, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

      As well as porous border of EU countries allowing non EU citizens to be able to claim they are such as Russians.

    • Electro-Kevin
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 1:08 am | Permalink

      That has always been my contention too, Tony.

      This is not being racist. It’s purely about the deeply worrying rise in our population levels.

      • Mike Stallard
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:59 am | Permalink

        I often go to our Church Hall where we make it our pleasant duty to welcome all the EU immigrants.
        Well, we have people who speak only Russian, we have one man from Angola, currently under medical supervision (who pays for that?), we have several Roma. We also had a proud Gambian a couple of days passing through. I personally have met a family (two wives) from West Africa. And so on. (There are several more I could mention).
        Every single one of these people is dependent in some way on other people’s hand outs.
        Thanks to some very, very hard work and an outstanding Manager, the Church has found most of them work and the place is now pretty well empty during the day. And at night, unless they are drunk, they are given a bed by a neighbouring Church.
        The EU is a blanket for all sorts and conditions of men, you know.

        • Bazman
          Posted April 19, 2012 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

          They only speak Russian because they are Russian. Many East Europeans like Poles and Latvians claim they cannot speak Russian, but in a life and death situation. Miraculously can. What does that tell you? They are Russians pretending? No. It tells you that they are, historically, an oppressed minority in their own country. Russians are able to say they are from these areas and obtain passports. Many African countries and Russian Republics see Russia as an advanced country and want Russian passports, which could be used to obtain an EU Passport. A bit of a stretch I must say, but happens.

        • Lindsay McDougall
          Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:16 pm | Permalink

          Thank you, Mike. You have given me even more reasons not to go to Church. I didn’t think that was possible.

          There was a time when it was an executive decision of the Home Secretary as to who was a refugee, who was an economic migrant and who might be a terrorist. As I recall, Henry Brooke was rather good at it.

    • Mark
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

      It’s a common canard, but the real problem (at least as revealed in the statistics) is not currently migration from the EU:–Who-is-Migrating-to-and-from-the-UK–Migration-by-Citizenship

      The largest chunk is non-EU net immigration, at over 200,000 p.a.

      There is little doubt that the official statistics managed to miss a large volume of EU migration in the Labour years because statistics were not collected at the airports used by the cheap airlines for flights into Europe.

  14. JimJ
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Permalink


    One big gap in your argument that Dave has finally got a grip on something is that nothing has been done with the EU requirement that our benefits system is open to all EU citizens.

    I used to regularly buy “The Big Issue” from this woman unknowing that she is pulling in the same amount in benefits that I get paid after putting in a forty hour week.

    Because my wife is a hospital doctor we will be losing our child benefit so as to ensure that her kids are given all the chances in Britain that they would not get in Romania, courtesy of the British taxpayer. You think that going to get me to vote Conservative? Now before anyone says if your wife’s a doctor you should be rich enough to live wife out it. CB is our only skin in the benefits game so if thats stopped, why the hell should we be compelled to pay NI if we get nothing from it?

    PS The government’s plans for who becomes a consultant are another sure fire vote winner. Are you serious that junior doctors should go off to NZ/Australia and you think they are going to come back? While the suggestion about Eastern Europe is ridiculous. Which health service is going to take on someone without the necessary language skills and who is going to take East European rates of pay to begin with?

    I will vote Conservative again when it is led/represented by people who seem to be in the real world and are not treating the role of MP as some sort of exercise in vanity/narcissism like Mrs Mensch.

    Reply: I did not say the government has proven its grip on this issue. I said they are sincere in wanting to control it, and have taken a number of measures – we need now to see if it works.

  15. Tony
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    This is all quite encouraging but the real immigration problem is the freedom of movement allowed within the eu. It’s absolutely ludicrous that a citizen from an eu state can just come and settle here whenever he or she may see fit regardless of the fact that they may possess no skills whatsoever. There are also no restrictions on families so that when these eu migrants arrive, their children can be educated and they can claim family allowance. What kind of crazy system is that?

    Like I said the real immigration problem is eu migration.

    • lifelogic
      Posted April 18, 2012 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

      Indeed the free movement in the EU will/is leading to lower pay (particularly in manual work) and sooner or later the abolition of free health care and much of the benefit system. Not that I am against those developments in the benefit and health system.

  16. Old Albion
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    Crikey ! it all sounds wonderful………………why do think otherwise?

  17. Susan
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    I know that it is not the Conservatives fault, but it is rather like closing the stable door after the horse has bolted Sorry to bring horses into it again. The UK is overpopulated and this situation can only become much worse as immigrants themselves have families. This has been one of the biggest mistakes the UK has ever made. It has ensured that should there be crisis in the economy, such as we have now, housing, the services, jobs, everything would come under pressure as we have to try to accommodate more people than a small island such as Britain should take. The worst part is that the UK Government did not even try to bring in people the economy needed, it is a little bit too late to try to do that now. So the situation is that Britain has a great deal of unskilled workers it does not need, who are able to claim generous benefits. Tensions are bound to rise as work becomes difficult to find and the services are squeezed to breaking point. Then there is the EU how many will continue to come in from there. More unskilled people the economy does not need. I doubt Britain will ever see near to full employment ever again under these circumstances.

    I have nothing against immigrants, who would not go for a better life if it was available in another Country but really enough is enough. Labour should have forced British people who were already on benefits back to work during the boom years instead of allowing immigrants to come in to do the jobs our people would not do. This would have ensured that in a recession not so many people would need assistance from the state.

    I do not know the full extent of the immigration problem myself but the friends I have who live in high immigrant areas say that it is as bad as ever with more arriving all the time. So what is the truth.

    • uanime5
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      Labour couldn’t force British people who were on benefits back to work during the boom years because employers preferred to hire cheaper immigrants who didn’t need to be trained.

      • Susan
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 9:53 am | Permalink


        There were plenty of ways in which people could have become trained for work during the Labour years. There was also a lot of work available both skilled and unskilled during the boom years. British people just did not want to work and give up their generous benefits. Therefore immigrants who were prepared to work came in and took the jobs that were available.

        I have said this to you before, the same people on long term benefits during the Labour boom years are the very same ones on benefits now. It is not fair to blame immigrants for this particular problem, put the blame where it belongs on the idle British

        • rose
          Posted April 20, 2012 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

          I wouldn’t dream of blaming the immigrants, Susan. I don’t know anyone who does. They are just trying to get a better future for themselves and their children, or to get some more money back home to them. They work extremley hard and have good manners and standards. Many are better educated and better spoken than the natives.

          I have never even met anyone who blames the immigrants. People blame greedy, irresponsible, short-sighted employers, and weak, dishonest, cowardly politicians. And they disapprove of certain sorts of lawyers lining their pockets, usually at public expense.

        • Bazman
          Posted April 22, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

          The immigrants where and are young, desperate, adventurous and fleet footed. The wasters like in Britain stopped in their own countries, claimed benefits and existed. Just like they do here.Do you think if they where made more poor and desperate they would see the error of their ways? This idea that all East Europeans are hard working is a fantasy.

  18. Acorn
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    “My name is David Cameron and I endorse this message.”

    ‘ere, are there elections somewhere? 😉

  19. D K MCgregor
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Are you inviting the Governments actions to be picked apart? If you think that the above will not be flagellated , you are badly misinformed. All the actions you ascribe to the government in this area are commendable but why doesn’t it feel like things have changed out here? Absolutely no MSM moaning or pressure group whining.Maybe it will take a while for the policies to work in but I feel sure that I will not be alone in thinking that we need reverse gear not just easing off the accelerator.

  20. rose
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for this, and thank you too for standing up today in the H of C for all the little people who work in Banks. The ones who earn less than teachers, less than policemen, less than tanker drivers and engine drivers, less than nurses, and a lot, lot less than people in the media and the House of Commons.

  21. sm
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Its the overall numbers of ins and the economic plus/minus, along with other non financial effects. The numbers need to exponentially lower for a period to take stock.

    This needs to be part of a coherent population policy, where macro controls apply within the EU as well, a simple form of rationing or cap.

    Indeed we don’t even apply controls that other EU nations do with respect to benefit entitlement,surely it would be better for the EU to direct funds to the countries concerned until they reach equivalence. The euro crisis is forcing mass migration and movement on their populations, it cannot be a rational economic or socially acceptable solution.Many families split apart for the euro?

    Then we have not dealt with the illegal/legal routes via the EU and ECHR interference in general.

    £35,000 way to low.

    3) Is it not possible for foreign nationals to serve time in their home country. Obviously intra-governments agreements may be needed dont we have a foreign office?

    4) Surely all applicants should be interviewed at their expense?

    All residents require jobs, affordable houses,cars,trains,buses,water, health facilities and basic needs from limited infrastructure and resources etc.

    Its the numbers that matter, and national security and cohesion. Otherwise why spy on us all?

    UKIP and or referenda agenda and a more direct representative democracy please.

  22. Timaction
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    So, when are they going to check to ensure these foreign students can support themselves and pay for any public services, especially health that they receive? I’ve seen the notices on display at medical establishments but how much is actually paid or raised? I’ve been told its very little and no one really checks on entitlement.
    So how many illegal immigrants (overstayers of various catagories) have they removed or are the Government waiting long enough so they can claim a right to a family life under the unreformed Article 8 Human Rights Act?
    I’m afraid we can only judge by results NOT announcements from Governments.

  23. uanime5
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Hopefully this will stop immigrants being used as cheap labour to depress wages in the UK. Though inter company transfers being exempt is still a problem, especially in the ICT industry.

    • A Different Simon
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:01 am | Permalink

      When I started in I.T. , there were some real boffins amongst the old guard and people actually knew the fundamental principles underlying their particular specialisation .

      The standard of I.T. worker has declined amongst both UK workers and immigrant workers and the quality of software delivered too imho .

      The Indian workers I came across 20 years ago were good .

      Now we are having raw recruits sent accross to learn on the job subsidised by our tax payer .
      These are not highly skilled workers and in most cases will never become highly skilled because only a few have the aptitude .

      A bigger problem than even ICT visa abuses is that big companies in the UK do not understand the importance of quality .

      The market for quality in I.T. staff in the UK is thus very small .

      They would much rather employ bulk mediocrity on low wages .

      Where are Britains Googles , Facebooks , IBM , Oracle , Microsoft , EMC etc ? Even Autonomy is no longer British .

      • Bazman
        Posted April 22, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

        Similar story in the metal trades. The employers want cheap and this is what they look for sorting out any problems even if it costs more money.
        How absurd this may seem to many middle class people in offices, but this is the way it is. The employers would rather pay for rectification work than pay higher labour rates and because of this as far as I am concerned can ram it.

  24. eddyh
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    And if you believe this, you will believe anything.

  25. Bob
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    These figures are meaningless without something to compare them to, such as percentages of totals or previous years figures.

    While on the subject, I hear that Abu Qatada has surprised the Home Secretary by lodging an appeal against his deportation. Who could have anticipated that?

  26. Stephen Almond
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    If the monthly cap on immigration has never been reached, is it possible the cap is too high?
    Another interpretation is that the cap is useless!

    • A Different Simon
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:03 am | Permalink

      Excellent point !

  27. JimF
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

    Door horse bolted.

    Immigration per se is not the issue. It’s folk coming here with no skills, no job. We should unashamedly take only the ones who want to do a deal with the UK, not just take.
    There should be a quota system based on skills, employability and age. Then a limited visa until people have proved their case, before consideraton of citizenship.

  28. Trevor Butler
    Posted April 18, 2012 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    Got to be careful here as in one sense I’m an immigrant having been born in the UK but growing up overseas and only returning after 35 years away.
    My wife and children are immigrants having been born outside this country but have now been given British citizenship.
    The biggest problem with immigration from outside the EU is non assimilation – I have yet to hear anyone complain about migrants from Australia, NZ, SA or the USA as they arrive and adapt (apart from their accents!) but migrants from certain other countries do not attempt to join mainstream society by doing such basic things as learning the language. Preferring, instead, to move into the ethnic enclaves that now exist in the major cities (etc etc)
    Multiculturalism is the problem – one can come to the UK and its just like home but with benefits and bad weather.
    Ramble over!

  29. Iain Gill
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 12:05 am | Permalink

    Mr. George Osborne… clarified that the UK Government thereafter has taken the decision not to make any change in the Intra Company Transfers for the next two years

    So Osbourne tells the Indian people what he is afraid to admit to the British people that ICT visas will remain uncapped for occupations not on the official shortage occupation list and Indian nationals and their families will continue to be allowed into this country in unrestricted numbers to displace Brits from the workforce, bring their spouse in who will be allowed to work unrestricted, their children in who will be given free schooling, be given large tax discounts compared to Brits, and over 30% of them will go onto getting British passports simply for working here a while

    meanwhile Brits contine to struggle to get visas to work in India

    you couldnt make it up

    so there is ZERO chance of meeting the governements commitments to reduce immigration made to the British people, what we in the real world call lying

  30. Iain Gill
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 12:15 am | Permalink

    I am working on a secret defence IT programme

    Even it is (attracting numerous overseas employees-ed) here on ICT visas

    How on earth have they passed the necessary security clearances? Makes a complete mockery of the checks on background of folk to get security clearance

    Doesnt anyone of the big boys running the country realise they may as well put our secrets up on open blogs



  31. Max Dunbar
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 1:15 am | Permalink

    You may as well forget it. The damage is done and your party is culpable. Why bring up the subject? We all know that although you may be in government you are not in power on this issue. It doesn’t matter how many locks you put on the door now. Its meaningless. Unless you move to another party or establish your own one you can’t be taken seriously on this subject.

  32. PJS
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    And yet immigration (not net migration which is a typical politicians fudge and dodge) is apparently running at record highs as any quick news search will show at over 500,000 a year.

    As with everything touched by this hopelessly incompetent car crash of a government it’s all unctuous sound bites and no effective action.

  33. A Different Simon
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:33 am | Permalink

    Is there any chance anything will be done about ICT Visa abuses ?

    Or must we just accept that the death of the UK I.T. industry is the price for access for our banks to Indian markets ?

    • zorro
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

      This is indeed the price they are prepared to pay…oh yes helping those (banks) who we have already bailed out by ruining the hopes of our own people.


      • A Different Simon
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

        Our financial services industry (with the exception of insurance underwriting) is like 1970’s British industry ; heavily subsidised and protected .

        When it comes to personal financial products almost all the regulations , ostensibly for protection of the consumer , are designed to ensure that insiders get the rewards .

        The charges for retail banking services are commendably low but for investment services they are punitive . Just look how high the charges are on the proposed Govt backed Nest pension scheme compared with those in the Netherlands and Scandinavia .

        When it gets to India and has to stand on it’s own two feet and compete on a more level playing field it will likely fail dismally and go the same way as British heavy industry .

        (which is where our failed banks should have gone before it was bailed out by the taxpayer)

  34. colliemum
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    Nice report – not that one would expect anything else from a government.
    This bullte point needs more clarifiction:

    “60% of new asylum applicants now receive a decision in just 30 days.”

    Bully for them – but what are the decisions,? Are they going to stay, are the being deported?
    In any case, where are those asylum seekers coming from? Are they not supposedly having to ask for asylum in the first safe country they came to?
    I hope we don’t assume that all EU countries are now ‘dangerous’ for asylum seekers …

    One last point: using %%, free-floating, without the actual numbers of the sample given, are simply a propaganda tool.
    Give us the real numbers, please: 60% of how many asylum seekers? 10? 100? 1000? we should be told.

    • Winston Smith
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

      “60% of new asylum applicants now receive a decision in just 30 days.”

      The inference is that the decision is yes or no. That is not true. The process, if all legal rights and appeals are requested, will take years. From the UKBA website:

      “Since March 2007, every new asylum application is placed with a single person who will deal with every aspect of it from beginning to end. This person is known as a case owner.

      The case owner AIMS to conclude your application within SIX months.”

      Did you bother to check your Party’s PR release before you publicised it? Cameron’s clique are worse than Blair’s New Labour. You will pay for it in the polls.

      • zorro
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

        Yes, indeed it is how quickly cases are concluded which is important. We need to conclude and remove quickly. When they are granted quickly,they have quicker access to the full range of benefits! It is not difficult at all to give an initial decision (refuse/grant) within that period. Look at the removal figures, that will make you weep.


  35. Mike Stallard
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:58 am | Permalink

    OK. So something – not a lot – is being done.
    Now I want to ask some questions:
    1. What is the relationship – no the real relationship please – between the ECHR and the EU? Abu Qatada points up the utter powerlessness of the Prime Minister and the Home Secretary and shows that even they have no ultimate power over our borders. Neither does the so called Supreme Court which replaced the House of Lords.

    2. Anders Brevik killed a lot of people and that was an outrage. Nobody but nobody has listened to what he is trying to say though.

    Reply: People understandably do not wish to listen to a mass murderer, or to give him air time.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      Maybe they ought to. And they ought to listen very carefully to Bin Laden and also to Abu Thingummy as well. They could be saying things which we ought to hear.

      Before the last election, the Labour Party put it out that the Tories were snobs who didn’t understand ordinary folk.

      In the election of 1997, the Conservatives said: “Don’t let Labour ruin it.”.

      (etc etc)

    • A Different Simon
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      John , Mike ,

      The fact that Anders Brevik committed an attrocity is not the salient issue .

      The problem is that politicians don’t want to listen to what they don’t want to hear .

      • rose
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

        From the DT web-site:

        “12.43pm Breivik reveals the last straw that caused him to carry out the massacre. He says it was the media’s supposedly unfair treatment of the populist Progress Party before the 2009 election. Had the media given this party – the second largest in Norway’s parliament – a fair hearing, Breivik claims that he may not “have lost faith in democracy and possibly I would have fought longer by democratic means”. Instead, he says it provided the “confirmation I needed” that democracy would not work. “

    • Susan
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 11:59 am | Permalink

      Mike Stallard,

      A couple of people have said that to me that the message was right but the killing of people was wrong. Unfortunately when you kill people you lose the right to have your message heard. People then unite against the person who committed the crimes and thus the message. He has actually done more harm to his cause than he would have if he had used the right methods to spread his beliefs. It makes him every bit as evil as people like Bin Laden and no one will care what he is trying to say.

      • rose
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

        Very well put Susan.

        If only the BBC et al had applied your rule to the IRA.

        Instead we now have them in the government – which they wouldn’t have been if they had stuck to lawful methods of persuasion. Mugabe the same. And the ANC. (words left out)
        Mrs T was so right. Never, ever give in to terrorism. And don’t give it publicity either. Alas, as with so much else, she didn’t get the support she should have from enough of the men around her.

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

        Quite right, Susan. Anders Brevik has a huge amount in common with Adolf Hitler – lazy, rambling, useless academically, useless in business, full of stupid ideas, good only at murder and war.

        Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma bomber, also harmed his cause irreperably by mass murder. As Gore Vidal said at the time – if only he had blown up that Federal building at night, he would have been a hero.

        McVeigh was a tragedy. Just before sentencing, McVeigh quoted a fragment from the words of Justice Brandeis, a dissenting choice in the Olmstead case (the police used evidence from a ‘phone tap and the court accepted it as admissable). Here is the full quotation:

        ” Decency, security and liberty alike demand that government officials shall be subject to the same rules of conduct that are commands to the citizen. In a government of laws, existence of the government will be imperiled if it fails to observe the laws scrupulously. Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or ill, it teaches the whole people by its example. If the government becomes a law breaker, it breeds contempt for the law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy. To declare that in the administration of the criminal law the end justifies the means – to declare that the government may commit crimes in order to secure the conviction of a private criminal – would ring terrible retribution. Against that pernicious doctrine, this court should resolutely set its face. ”

        Justice Brandeis lost the argument. Should he have done?

        • Bazman
          Posted April 22, 2012 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

          McVeigh tried to come across as the Lone Wolf, but in reality was just a sad (person-ed) who it has to be said did build a pretty (nasty-ed) bomb. He made no attempt to escape or hide. The police found the rear axle of the truck, traced the numbers to a rental company and found him through his credit card address. In his garage was all the evidence. Easy as that.

    • rose
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      I remember Lord Home throwing out 300 Russians without any notice. They said: “You can’t do this to us. We can annihilate you , you know.” He replied to them that we had a very small deterrent, but that he could assure them they would get the lot. No more argument. We were an independent country then, with a clear-thinking, if mild-mannered Foreign Secretary.

    • Mactheknife
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 4:23 pm | Permalink


      A typical comment from a politician. Nobody is saying what he did was right infact to was absolutely wrong, but nobody in power is acknowledging his reasons – at least in public. Yes he is extreme, but there are people who have reached or are close to reaching this point of frustration with the EU and the immigration policies of their national governments.

      I think politicians understand where Brevik is coming from, but because of the potential media reaction they can only condemn. Lets hope they are studying events and the deep-seated concerns and learning lessons for future policies.

      This type of horrific event can not be repeated and governments have the power via policies to stop this.

      Reply: There is no justification for mass murder in a democratic western society where there are plenty of ways of making fair points and pressign for change.

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

        Yes, indeed, Mr Redwood. And one of the best ways of pressing for change is for senior Conservative back benchers to tell the Commons and the Prime Minister what (in their opinion) is the immigration policy that most people want.

        The Prime Minister is an good politician, supremely self confident and assertive, and good at the dispatch box. However, many of his ideas are wrong. The other day he was replying to Labour and stated that very low interest rates were essential for economic growth. That’s just plain wrong. Very low interest rates generate inflation, the hidden tax that does not create growth – rather the reverse.

        The Prime Minister should be told when he is wrong. In the long run, it’s the kind thing to do.

        • rose
          Posted April 20, 2012 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

          It isn’t just the PM who holds this wrong view on interest rates, Lindsay, but the whole lot of them, both sides of the Atlantic too. It’s as much a heresy to say interest rates should go up as that immigration should come down. And it has been for at least ten years. That’s why the grey vote will go elsewhere. Difficult to say where though.

      • Mactheknife
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 9:30 am | Permalink

        Isn’t that what I just said ? BUT its up to you politicians who have the power over policy decisions to develop policies that reflect public opinion….not that of the political elite !!!

        We can vote and press for change all we want but when politicians get in power they are whipped into the party line.

      • A Different Simon
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 9:31 am | Permalink

        Not sure that the populations of Italy or Greece would consider themselves living in a democracy anymore .

        They’ve got a reasonable case for considering themselves occupied powers and if recourse to talking doesn’t work why shouldn’t they resist directly (only against legitimate targets) ?

        What about British citizens rotting in jails on remand in European countries which do not respect habeous corpus who have been extradited by European Arrest Warrants which have not been reviewed by a British court ?

        It’s a pity that we’ve got a political class which feels it’s job is to quell disorder which it is itself responsible for creating and which considers itself too important to listen to little people .

        • rose
          Posted April 20, 2012 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

          Yet again, Simon, I am reminded of Nicholas Ridley’s words of warning on this, the ones he was sacked for saying in private, in the country, to the trusted son of a colleague. That people would take to fighting in the streets if they couldn’t express themselves democratically in the normal way – if they and their governments had to take orders from the ECB on matters like exchange and interest rates, and couldn’t do anything about the economic consequences – the unemployment, the bankruptcy etc.

      • Steven Whitfield
        Posted April 20, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

        He had no reason to do what he did other than he was mad and completely lost the plot in a fit of hate. End of story.

        The politicians need to engage with the genuine reasons for controling immigration, based on good human qualities of kindness and concern for the well being of fellow humans and the environment.

    • zorro
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

      They should have waited a couple of days so that any potential appeal would have been out of time. Why the rush instead of waiting 48 hours….? Were they that desperate for a good headline?


    • sm
      Posted April 20, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      Some people do want to listen to what Brevik says. It is not being shown live, but 17 courtrooms of people are watching.

      I cant speak for them, but i would want to listen. What you make of it is up to you

      It is impossible to justify his actions- but i doubt that was his aim He was obviously dissatisfied with something?
      Reply: If you have a view you want to air there are many ways of doing it. To say it arose from the statements of a mass murderer will put most of us off, so I advise you do not link it to this man. I am not going to host discussion of a mass murderer,s views.

  36. Bernard Otway
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 6:01 am | Permalink

    AND AND AND guess what ? I and the rest of us in the REAL world believe in the TOOTH
    FAIRY,FAIRIES AT THE BOTTOM OF THE GARDEN and other such things OH and of
    corse that ABSOLUTE new RELIGION “Man made climate change”.

  37. ian wragg
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 6:05 am | Permalink

    450,000 of the last 500,000 jobs to foreigners.
    Why does Cameroon think 99,999 is a suitable figure ( tens of thousands???)
    Why are we not stopping issuing passports in all but the most extreme cases??
    Why do most believe that at the end of this year nother 250,000 will be let in and we will again be told that it takes time for policies to work.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:10 am | Permalink

      Immigration is fed by two irreversible things:
      1. The native population has been going down very fast. Contraception, the decay of the family, the rise in the standard of living, classroom education, the women’s liberation movement freeing up women from home building, abortion – all these have cut the birth rate drastically.
      2. Air travel has made Heathrow the same racially, culturally and religiously as Dubai, Bangkok, Durban. It is so easy to move round nowadays.

      • Bazman
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

        progress Son.

  38. MajorFrustration
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    But will the Civil Service implement these new proposals. To test these measures and the Civil Service we need some form of newspaper type “sting” or “ghost immigrants” What we are told by governemnt is not always what happens in real life.

  39. lojolondon
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    It does look good on the surface, John, I know there will be a hangover from Labour’s immigration policy that will take a while to reverse.

    The elephant in the room is the EU – the agreement that we need to take in anyone who wants to move, and the ECHR’s ruling that we cannot insist they have a job, they can claim benefits from day 1.

    Reply: Indeed – it sounds as if they done what they can. Now we await the next year’s numbers, to see if this is working as planned.

    • zorro
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

      John, I was going to make this point earlier but haven’t had the time today. Net migration was higher than ever before in the calendar year 2011, after 18 months of government. Don’t expect too much for 2012. They will make a small dent but there may be a few other spoilers over the next year which might take the shine off any lowering of that figure.

      There are a few doubtful poits though….

      The new accreditation system for students was long overdue, and not difficult to put in place. You create a new system whcih means that some colleges can’t fulfillthe criteria. They are defacto off the register as a result.

      The Intra Company Transfer figure has increased and is easily manipulated by companies, a fact to which many of your bloggers will attest.

      They have cut the automatic link to settlement which is good…but with inflation that £35,000 will have to be reconsidered.

      Let’s see how they get on with their attempt at containing Family migration.

      Border Force are struggling for staff and are having to recruit retired and recently released staff to man desks for the Olympics and crisis situations….What a waste of public money paying these people to leave in the first place!

      They may be doing security checks on people arriving but what about immigration/credibility checks. The refusal/removal figures at ports of entry according to their official statistics have halved in the last two years from 30,000 to 15,000….

      ‘We have started interviewing selected visa applicants to test their credibility…’

      Well, they used to interview a lot more in the past when they had more of a control on immigration so they surely should be interviewing applicants.


  40. stred
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    (Allegations removed as no evidence produced-ed)
    Another point not mentioned by others is the effect of Tax Credits on the birthrate of the immigrant population. Quite a few of my friends are the children of Indians who came here after fighting in WW2. They are a bit peed off when they get to know what the newer arrivals tell them. I was told that the new incomers with lower paid jobs think they have never been better off than now, thanks to GB’s tax credits. It is hardly surprising then that there is now a new baby boom in the big cities and half or more are children of immigrants.

    Never mind though, we need more young people to pay off the £1.4T debt in the future. Perhaps though, they will chose to emigrate rather than pay and stay in a freezing cold UK with no Gulf Stream to keep us warm.

  41. StrongholdBarricades
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    A simpler way to attack immigration is to find out where the majority are coming from and then try to get that country to pay the equivalent of the UK minimum wage.

    No economic migrants if they are as well off at home

  42. Robert Taggart
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    Immigrants are by their very nature the most selfish of people…
    Whatever their Race or Creed – they only ever do so for their own betterment. Their only loyalty be to themselves.
    A few may have something really valuable to offer – most alas have not.
    Blighty be full – enough.

  43. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Well, that hasn’t gone down very well, and we haven’t even got round to the vast numbers of illegal immigrants who’re already here and who should be searched out and removed.

    My proposal, which may seem harsh but should be practical, is that in general a person who’s been identified and detained as an illegal immigrant can earn the right to stay by providing information leading to the removal of ten other illegal immigrants.

    At least that should cut the numbers potentially to be granted amnesty down to tens of thousands.

  44. Tad Davison
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    But what about the ‘legal’ immigrants that come to this country from within the EU, is that not a bigger problem, or at least one that is equally as big?

    It seems to me, that when a country lives within it’s means, does the right things, and subsequently prospers, as Britain did prior to the 1997 general election, it is penalised, as the jobs it creates are then taken by people from countries whose governments are not so responsibly disposed. And with reference to the EU, let’s not see this in the context of ‘we are all in this together’, and employment of it’s people’s are for the common good, because, make no mistake, other EU countries are Britain’s competitors, not our partners.

    During their 13 year tenure, the last shower gave away powers to the EU, that they had no right to give in the first place. They also dumbed-down the education system (and I know this to be true, because my son graduated with a degree back in 2009, and having re-wrote all his essays for him, I have first-hand knowledge of the very poor standards otherwise asked of undergraduates), and Labour failed to educate our embryonic workforce in the qualities and skills this nation so desperately needs. Even basic reading, writing, and arithmetic skills were allowed to diminish to such an extent, that university freshmen are now, in some cases, having to undertake courses in these basic skills to bring them up to an acceptable standard. Absolutely unheard of in the days of the grammar school system!

    We now have tens of thousands of young indigenous people languishing on the dole, that ought to be usefully employed, whilst jobs they could do, are taken by those from elsewhere.

    I don’t have a problem with taking people from abroad, either from within the EU, or outside of it, to fill the jobs we absolutely cannot find the right candidates for here at home, but the poor planning and appalling lack of foresight in the past, hasn’t done us any favours. What worries me greatly however, is that merely controlling non-EU immigration, is but stopping the mice. The elephants, in the form of EU migrants, might yet stampede this place to an even greater extent than it already has. Greece, Spain, and Portugal all have massive unemployment issues, and the quick fix is to let those who will, travel abroad to the UK, to follow in the footsteps of Poles and other Eastern Europeans.

    So how might this present government stop this, short of the re-negotiation of existing EU treaties, which they seem not to have an appetite for?

    Tad Davison


  45. Vanessa
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    It is amazing that 30 years ago all this control was taken for granted. We checked passports and stopped criminals coming into this country and, I am sure, we were able to get rid of anyone who committed a crime without asking permission from the EU first. This is progress – we cannot deport dangerous criminals, we cannot deport foreigners who KILL or are a threat to OUR security but let them live here with their extended family AND give them MY money in benefits to live more comfortably than a lot of British Subjects – who has taken leave of their senses??????

    • alan jutson
      Posted April 20, 2012 at 8:26 am | Permalink


      Your point is so simple, but oh so true.

      We are not in control of our own Country any more, and this is a prime example.

    • rose
      Posted April 21, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

      And we no longer do the health screening we used to do. So TB and a whole lot else is back.

  46. Terry Harris
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    I am grateful to you John for publishing this information as should our Government be grateful to you, too.

    This is where the present leadership are going wrong. In spite of having a PR expert residing in number 10 they are failing to communicate with the general public.

    For example, Mrs Thatcher’s Poll Tax idea was a very fair one but it was let down by the distinct lack of a full explanation, to the people, of its principles . Ziltch communication gave the lefties the weak spot they sought.
    What has happened to the Tories? Why is it so difficult to make a regular status report available to the general public via the standard media? Why cannot a downloadable version be created each month and one given to say, all free newspapers in the country, to publish. That will up their readership and hopefully boost their advertising revenue. It will give those without the high tech products even more reason to read those local papers. But please don’t let them create another QUANGO to assess the idea.

    • rose
      Posted April 19, 2012 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

      The main mistake the government made over the poll tax was to set it too high. It should have come in at the same figure as the BBC’s licence fee – which was not only paid by the dustman and the duke at the same rate, but also by luxury hotels with many bedrooms and sitting rooms. The Dorchester Hotel paid the BBC the same fee as a widow in a council flat.

      Presumably this was the then chancellor’s very own political failure.

      If he had been more imaginative it would have been impossible for the BBC to lead the daily onslaught on the Poll Tax until it was ditched.

      The present system is known in our family as “Heseltine’s Folly.” And to those who live in quite modest terraced houses in band H, I say H for Heseltine.

      • Bazman
        Posted April 19, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

        Pretty much ended where they wanted it rose. The poor paying the most as a percentage of income and the rich paying the least.Band H being a quite modest house? Not where I’m from. There is a large number of quite modest houses and this is why they pay the most. Ram it.

        • rose
          Posted April 20, 2012 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

          “Not where I’m from.”

          As you don’t seem to deny, Bazman, it isn’t what you’ve got but where you are that determines what you pay.

  47. Mark
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Net migration in the year to June 2011 was 250,000, and student immigration was 242,000 according to the ONS. Two thirds of the 170,000 New Commonwealth immigrants came to “study”. Student immigration used to be about 50,000 p.a. in the 1990s, which was a sensible number. Abuse of this route is the main reason for immigration to be so high. The measures taken are a start, but I suspect insufficient if they simply reduce student visas issued from 360,000 to 290,000. Many such visas are issued for shorter courses that don’t count as long term immigration, and undetected overstayers are excluded from the statistics. Interviews to establish bona fides should be the norm – not just for a sample from a few countries.—Why-are-People-migrating-to-and-from-the-UK-

    • Mark
      Posted April 20, 2012 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

      Is this really controversial – a simple discussion of published statistics?

      As a reminder, HESA data show that foreign students at HESA establishments paid £9,200 on average in fees – very similar to the fees that students in England are expected to pay, which will not over the entire cost of tuition. Not only are foreign students a numerical burden on housing, but also it appears they do not pay their way.

      • rose
        Posted April 21, 2012 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

        And they don’t pay council tax, but can in practice, it seems, vote.

  48. Robin
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    Nice try John but it is too little far, far too late.
    The BBC has won.

    • Bazman
      Posted April 20, 2012 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

      Won what Robin? The BBC reporting things you do not like at the same time as many other news sources. What do you propose to do about these other news sources once you have sorted out the BBC?

      • Bazman
        Posted April 21, 2012 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

        Robin. Another (person with unsupported views I don’t like-ed) unable to defend his views. What is it exactly you do for a living Robin?

  49. Winston Smith
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Today’s news is full of the problems of the lack of primary school places for children. The media, bar the odd exception, are being told not to mention the elephant in the room: IMMIGRATION. Instead, they keep telling us its just a birth-rate increase. They refuse to mention who is having the babies. When I was a Conservative activist, I kept pressing local Tory councillors to do something about the lack of school places which will come to fruition in a few years time. I knew this because I had young children and the maternity wards and nurseries were full of immigrant mothers and their children. They ignored me. Well, that LA is now one of the worst in London for shortfalls in places.

  50. BobE
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    It looks like UKIP will be ahead of the Lib Dems for numbers after the May 3rd elections.

  51. Steven Whitfield
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 10:15 pm | Permalink


    The title of your blog states ‘Incisive and topical campaigns on today’s issues and tomorrow’s problems’ . So why turn your blog into a mouthpiece for government propoganda ?

    I don’t remember you uncritically repeating the government’s press releases on taxation, transport and other issues. So why is the subject of immigration given special status ?.

    Surely we have now grown up enough and moved on far enough from the days of Enoch Powell to be able to have an honest discussion about the Immigration issue ?

    Return. As people are very concerned about immigration I though they should see what the government is doing. I will respond to the debate with my views later

    • rose
      Posted April 21, 2012 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

      We weren’t thought to be grown up enough then, and we still aren’t deemed to be by the media now.

      The difference now is that people can read Enoch’s speech for themselves, and make their own judgement of it.

      The governement should be less cowed by the media and put all these matters out on the internet. Let the media then do their damnedest. People can read it and make their own judgement. They couldn’t in the past when the media traduced any MP who sought to represent his consituents.

  52. Dennis
    Posted April 20, 2012 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    Immigration even at 99,999 per year is just too absurd but the real problem is not the number of immigrants now, although not helping, but the rest of the population. For a country like the UK a population of more than 60 million is completely unsustainable which is easily seen by all the environmental problems we suffer from viz. energy needs, parking, congestion in hospitals & roads & trains & landfill sites, then CO2 emissions etc., water supplies, fuel needs, schools, vast numbers of wind farms needed etc. etc..
    Plus we are taking more than or fair share of other people’s resources so our policy of wanting to become even richer is such a selfish, greedy and disgusting one.
    Why do we need this vast population when most of the Scandinavian countries do quite well with fewer than 10 million many with 5 million? Remember how wealthy the Icelanders were with a population of fewer than 300,000? Some questionable wealth creation methods perhaps but they did prosper by keeping out those immigrant British fishermen from their fishing grounds.
    The UK’s population should be around 15 million, not more than 20 million. Can’t be solved anytime soon but no gov’t policy or education at all on this. Still it’s too late now so no chance of a bright future for at least 100 years or so. miracles accepted.

    • rose
      Posted April 21, 2012 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

      15 million is still 3 times Denmark’s population, nearly 4 times Norway’s; and 20 million is 2 1/2 times Sweden’s. What seems a hopelessly unattainable goal is still an alarmingly unsustainable size by our Nordic cousins’ standards. But those nations now seem to be going down our mad, mad road themelves, if from a much lower base. When we went to Norway over ten years ago, the people we met there were already desperate about it. “We are so few, ” they said, “and they are so many.” What must they be saying now?

      The folly has been to say we must import tax payers to keep the oldies in pensions, but without thinking through all the ramifications It would have been better to go through a very uncomfortable time with a lop-sided population, and then recover normality. As it is the future looks truly terrifying.

  53. pedroelingles
    Posted April 20, 2012 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

    The increasing percentage of immigrants being held in HM Prisons is rising so rapidly that a partial answer to the problem may be imminent. Judging by the Identity photos displayed on TV of those thugs being banged-up after the Riots then a repeat episode should result in a “Full House” and only very lenient and totally inadequate sentences possible. Then an immediate decision will have to be made with a simple choice – instant deportation or release them back on the streets.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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