Nine-in-Ten New UK Positions go to British Workers During Jobs Boom

Former UK Independence Party (UKIP) leader, Brexit campaigner and member of the European Parliament Nigel Farage speaks at a pro-Brexit rally in central London on March 29, 2019, organised by Leave Means Leave. - British MPs on Friday rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's EU divorce deal for a third time, …
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Nearly all new jobs created in the United Kingdom since the 2016 European Union (EU) membership referendum have gone to British workers, a distinct change from the period before the vote when nearly half went to EU migrants.

The number of EU nationals who joined the British workforce — either getting a job in Britain for the first time, or returning to work after a period of absence — was 35,000 since the 2016 Brexit referendum. This is less than a tenth of the number who joined in the two years running up to the vote, when the figure stood at 410,000.

In that period, nearly half of new jobs went to EU citizens, but now they account for around 1-in-20, according to The Telegraph.

Minister of State for Employment Alok Sharma said of those now joining the workforce: “since the referendum there have been over one million more people in work in the UK, up to a record 32.7 million in February 2019.”

“Employers are clearly already adjusting to lower immigration from the EU, and it is UK workers who have filled in the gaps – accounting for around nine in ten of new people in work since 2016, compared to half of the people entering work in the two years before.”

Although EU immigration has fallen since the Brexit referendum, the period has seen immigration from the rest of the world hit a 15-year-high. Sharma’s comments did not address the impact on the labour market these non-EU arrivals were having.

Despite wild claims during the Brexit referendum that merely voting to leave the European Union would cause an “immediate and profound shock” to the British economy, the country has instead enjoyed a period of economic good news, showing former Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne’s gloomy Brexit predictions to be out by around £100 billion.

The Telegraph also reported Sharma as saying that Britain actually leaving the European Union would further compound this good news: “When we leave the EU, and end the freedom of movement of EU workers, far from presenting a challenge to fill vacancies – employers should seize an opportunity… It’s UK workers who have driven this record jobs market, and UK workers who can help maintain it.”

The comments by the Minister of State come just days after the latest release of official statistics which show that unemployment in the United Kingdom is at a 45-year-low, a development running in tandem with the total number of people in work in the country standing at an all-time high.

This rise in employment, coupled with a higher number of job vacancies becoming available, has seen stronger wage growth at 3.5 percent, meaning earnings are outpacing inflation at 1.8 percent, leaving the average worker with more money in his pocket. The largest proportional wage rise came for the lowest paid, and the number of people in the lowest paid jobs is now at the lowest level since 1997.

Speaking of those figures last week, Sharma was again full of praise for the potential offered by Brexit. He said: “The UK jobs market continues to go from strength to strength, proving the underlying resilience of the British economy.

“But we must not take this for granted. We need to work urgently to get behind a Brexit deal that protects this jobs record and gives employers the certainty to continue to invest in their workforce and boost wages,” he added.

Oliver JJ Lane is the editor of Breitbart London — Follow him on Twitter and Facebook


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