Record migration into Britain is result of Government policy failings
Record migration into Britain is a result of a failure of Government policies to control the borders since 1991, a new report claims.
By Christopher Hope, Whitehall Editor
Last Updated: 4:11PM GMT 17 Mar 2009
The analysis, by campaign group Migrationwatch showed that the percentage of the world population who are international migrants increased from 2.5 per cent in 1960 to three per cent in 2005.
In Britain the percentage of people born outside the country increased by one per cent to 5.8 per cent between 1961 and 1991. Yet the proportion then accelerated, doubling to 11 per cent in 2008.
Official figures released last month showed that one in nine people living in Britain – 6.5 million people – was born overseas in the year to June 2008.
Sir Andrew Green, chairman of Migrationwatch, said: “The Government seems to make a habit of blaming current ills on 'global forces' but our analysis shows that this problem is almost entirely 'home grown'.
“It could, and should, have been more competently managed, so preventing the rising tide of resentment among the public.”
The report blamed the abolition of embarkation controls in 1998, which stopped “counting out” migrants for part of the increase.
David Blunkett- then Home Secretary was forced to admit later that the Government now had “no idea” who is in Britain.
It also criticised the Government for losing control of the asylum system, with the number of applicants whose claim is rejected still outstripping the number removed.
The report also criticised the Government for “specifically” encourging economic migrants since 2000 with the number of work permits issued trebling over the past decade.
Sir Andrew added: “Many people are at a loss to know how all this was allowed to happen.
“Despite having dismantled border controls, they deliberately encouraged immigration, partly to make the economic growth figures look better.
“The fact that the extra population cancelled out any real benefit to the resident population was repeatedly denied.”
The UK Border Agency said that it had made more than 4,900 arrests of people who were working illegally. A spokesman said: “We've always said that we would run our immigration system for the benefit of the UK.
“We have put in place the biggest shake-up of the immigration system in over a generation including the introduction of the Points Based System.
“The points system means only foreign workers we need and no more can come here.
“We will not tolerate anyone who wishes to abuse the system.”
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