X

Create an account to continue reading.

Registered readers have access to our blogs and a limited number of magazine articles
For unlimited access to The Spectator, subscribe below

Registered readers have access to our blogs and a limited number of magazine articles

Sign in to continue

Already have an account?

What's my subscriber number?

Subscribe now from £1 a week

Online

Unlimited access to The Spectator including the full archive from 1828

Print

Weekly delivery of the magazine

App

Phone & tablet edition of the magazine

Spectator Club

Subscriber-only offers, events and discounts
 
View subscription offers

Already a subscriber?

or

Subscribe now for unlimited access

ALL FROM JUST £1 A WEEK

View subscription offers

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating an account – Your subscriber number was not recognised though. To link your subscription visit the My Account page

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

X

Login

Don't have an account? Sign up
X

Subscription expired

Your subscription has expired. Please go to My Account to renew it or view subscription offers.

X

Forgot Password

Please check your email

If the email address you entered is associated with a web account on our system, you will receive an email from us with instructions for resetting your password.

If you don't receive this email, please check your junk mail folder.

X

It's time to subscribe.

You've read all your free Spectator magazine articles for this month.

Subscribe now for unlimited access – from just £1 a week

You've read all your free Spectator magazine articles for this month.

Subscribe now for unlimited access

Online

Unlimited access to The Spectator including the full archive from 1828

Print

Weekly delivery of the magazine

App

Phone & tablet edition of the magazine

Spectator Club

Subscriber-only offers, events and discounts
X

Sign up

What's my subscriber number? Already have an account?

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating an account – Your subscriber number was not recognised though. To link your subscription visit the My Account page

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

X

Your subscriber number is the 8 digit number printed above your name on the address sheet sent with your magazine each week.

Entering your subscriber number will enable full access to all magazine articles on the site.

If you cannot find your subscriber number then please contact us on customerhelp@subscriptions.co.uk or call 0330 333 0050.

You can create an account in the meantime and link your subscription at a later time. Simply visit the My Account page, enter your subscriber number in the relevant field and click 'submit changes'.

Please note: Previously subscribers used a 'WebID' to log into the website. Your subscriber number is not the same as the WebID. Please ensure you use the subscriber number when you link your subscription.

Coffee House

Cameron’s immigration problem

25 August 2011

1:34 PM

25 August 2011

1:34 PM

Poor David Cameron. He pledged to reduce annual net migration from the current 240,000 to the "tens of thousands" and what happens? Net migration in 2010 was up by 21 per cent from 2009. In a way, he deserves the flak he’ll get because this was a daft target that could
only have been set by someone poorly-advised about the nature of immigration. And the target allows success to be presented as failure.

The inflow to Britain has stayed steady (see graph below), but the number emigrating from Britain has fallen. This is a compliment to Cameron: the most sincere vote people can make is with their
feet. And in our globalised world, countries have to compete for people. Britain is as attractive as ever it was to immigrants, and more natives are staying put.  

[Alt-Text]


Cameron should only ever have pledged to stem the inflow. Governments of free countries can’t stop people emigrating, so the net figure, ie the inflow minus the outflow, is not something he could
or should have given a pledge on. In my view, Britain’s immigration inflow is driven primarily by a demand for migrant labour (foreign nationals account for almost the entire employment rise under Cameron so far). This can only be
changed by radical labour market reform (tax, regulation etc), which I don’t expect to happen. So I’d say Cameron has a snowball’s chance in hell of meeting his target. Today’s figures will be the
first of many over the next four years making that point.

Subscribe to The Spectator today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Get more Spectator for less – just £12 for 12 issues.


Show comments
Close