A report released today by the Migration Advisory Committee showed that EU migrant workers in the UK have contributed a total of £22bn to public finances, which is roughly equivalent to £2,732 per worker per year.
Before I begin this post, I would like to quote directly from the findings of this report:
“The evidence to date suggests little effect on employment and unemployment of UK-born workers, but that wages for the low paid may be lowered as a result of migration, although again this effect is modest.”
Now, if you’ll indulge me, I would like to examine the headlines of two major British newspapers and their reactions to this report:
Fascinating isn’t it. Neither of these newspapers have even examined the positive results that the study suggests. The downsides, as reported, are that certain local communities are feeling an undue pressure on their services. Apparently, “certain local communities” now means “Britain” and £22bn in added to public finances is negligible.
This further serves to highlight the complete lack of cohesion emanating from the anti-EU debate. This report, published by Prime Minister David Cameron’s own home office, clearly shows the economic benefits EU immigration has produced all the while refuting the claims that it has ‘crowded out’ UK workers. Yet, in the coverage of this report in major papers, the main focus is on the small negative aspect that further adds fuel to the fire of anti-EU activists.
Only the Financial Times has had an impartial coverage of this debate, yet it really is fascinating how the media and political world seems so dead set against Europe. How are British voters expected to make a rational decision come 2017 if the information they are being given is so blatantly one-sided? Granted, these two newspapers do not represent the sum total of all media outlets, however this portrayal is alarming. Perhaps these news outlets do not see an incentive in looking at the upsides of this news. That’s particularly odd, as I can think of quite a few: £22bn to be exact!
For more on the statistic:
Other relevant links (and some irrelevant ones):