Annual net migration record high is unsurprising given the relative performance of UK jobs market and its ‘magnetic’ nature

Responding to the latest quarterly migration ONS statistics, Gerwyn Davies, Labour Market Adviser at the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, comments:

“News that net long-term migration hit a record high in the twelve months to March 2015 isn’t a great surprise given the ‘magnetic’ nature of the UK jobs market at this moment in time. It’s alluring for EU migrants, given the high number of jobs being generated in comparison to other European countries, and ongoing recruitment difficulties are encouraging some employers to proactively recruit EU migrants. CIPD research recently showed that one in ten employers with recruitment difficulties are currently hiring EU migrants from their home country, which may partly reflect the fact that almost two thirds of EU migrants who come to the UK to live and work have a definite job when they arrive here.

“The fact that three-quarters of the growth in employment over the last year was accounted for by foreign nationals highlights just how competitive our labour market is. In response, Government must redouble its efforts to ensure that UK born young people have access to better career information advice and guidance and create more quality vocational training routes into employment, such as apprenticeships, so they can compete in a tough labour market.

“The less significant increase in immigration for work purposes among non-EU citizens is also interesting to see, given that the Government looks set to introduce further restrictions on non-EU workers.  If further cuts need to be made, the Government must look at the distribution and the true value of the different routes through which non-EU migrants come to the UK to live and work.”


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