‘Give British Workers a Chance!’ Think Tank Bashes Plan to Import Millions of Workers During Economic Crisis

BRISTOL, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 18: People queue outside a Job Centre on March 18, 2009 in Bristol, England. Official figures published today show that UK unemployment has risen above two million for the first time since 1997 - and according to the TUC, there are now 10 jobseekers for …
Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Migration Watch UK has condemned Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan to open up the jobs of millions of British workers to global competition as a part of its post-Brexit economic strategy, despite looming high unemployment in the wake of the China virus.

Analysis conducted by the mass migration sceptic think tank warned that through the reduction of educational and salary requirements, the government will expose 150 mid-skill professions –including butchers, bakers, and welders — which are currently staffed by around three million British-born workers to global competition.

A further set of four million people in 100 high skill occupations, such as electronics engineers, IT specialist managers, social workers, journalists, academic researchers, and public relations directors will also be exposed to greater pressure due to the cap on firms hiring foreign workers being eliminated.

Migration Watch UK warned that the influx of millions of cheap foreign workers will disincentivise the government and private industry to invest in training for the native population.

“It is shocking that the government is ploughing ahead with a plan that was first conceived before the COVID virus struck, even as UK unemployment shoots up, as companies collapse and as lay-offs continue to be announced,” Migration Watch said in a statement seen by Breitbart London.

“The exposure of millions of UK jobs to global recruitment in present circumstances risks seriously hurting British workers. As companies collapse, giving British workers a fair chance to apply for jobs in the UK must be the urgent need of the hour,” added Migration Watch UK chairman Alp Mehmet.

During the economic shutdown imposed by the British government in response to the Chinse coronavirus, the UK saw the largest recession in recorded history, with the economy contracting by 19.8 per cent in the period between April to June.

Young people have been particularly affected by the recession, with 156,000 fewer people aged 16 to 24 in the workforce in the three months to July compared to the previous quarter.

“Generation Z has been hit particularly hard by the economic fall out of the pandemic as the retail and hospitality sectors, which have taken such a battering, are often relied on to help school and university leavers find an entry-level job, and get started in the world of work,” said senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown Susannah Streeter.

“Sadly, this may not just be a bump in the road but could have long term consequences for the path of their careers,” Streeter added.

Despite this, the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has recommended that the government open up 1.5 million jobs to the Shortage Occupation List, meaning that the salary threshold required to hire a foreign worker could be cut, thereby increasing competition for young Britons.

Migration Watch UK said that it was “telling” that the MAC said of employers: “…respondents reported using a range of techniques to fill vacancies, recruiting non-UK nationals was both the most commonly-stated solution to overcoming vacancies.”

In last year’s Conservative Party manifesto, Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to the public that if elected he would seek to cut total immigration. He promised to do so through the introduction of an Australian-style points system.

However, unlike the Australian model, the one introduced by the Conservative-led government places no cap on the number of migrants firms can hire, meaning that rather than cutting migration it could result in a drastic increase.

The Conservative Party has previously promised to reduce the numbers of migrants “from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands”. However, this pledge has never been fulfilled. In 2017, the former Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osbourne, admitted that the party never had any intention on reducing migration.

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here: @KurtZindulka

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