Benefits of immigration to the UK remain obscure

Two in three Brits still think it has negative effect

26th November 2009: The contribution of the migrants to the UK’s economy in the times of recession not withstanding, reports are trickling in suggesting almost two in three Brits still think immigration has a negative effect on the UK.

The results have again brought to fore the need for generating awareness among the people on the benefits of immigration.

The poll on border control policies carried out by Angus Reid Public Opinion says as many as 67 per cent felt immigration was not good for Britain. On the other hand, 56 per cent believed illegal migrants were taking jobs from British workers.

In all 2,006 people were talked to. As many as 57 per cent of the total were of the opinion illegal newcomers should be deported.

The Sun reported nearly 23 per cent of those talked to thought illegal immigrants should be allowed to work in the UK on a temporary basis. Approximately 13 per cent wanted them to have the opportunity of becoming UK citizens.

The poll made it clear that mass immigration will be a key issue among voters at next year’s general election.

The assertion comes at a time when the trend shows just more than one in 10 jobs was filled by persons born overseas.

Figures made public published last year showed 3.7 million foreign-born workers or non UK-born were in jobs in Britain. The total, including both foreigners and UK citizens born overseas, increased by an estimated 1.4 million in the past 10 years.

Economic forecasters have all along been asserting migrants are vital for the economy; and Britain’s recovery from the recession is likely to be hit by a fall in the number of immigrant workers. Rather, it threatens to create skills shortages and hold back the recovery.

Only recently the forecasters had asserted the impact of shortage of qualified staff would reflect itself not only on gross domestic product growth, but also threatened to obstruct efforts to rebalance the economy, with more manufacturing and less financial and other services.

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