July 13, 2009
As the latest immigration Bill comes to the House of Commons on Tuesday for its final approval, new research published today shows that the immigration policies of neither the Conservative Party nor the Labour Party will stop the UK’s population hitting 70 million - up from 61 million today.
The official forecast is that, in the absence of major policy changes, we will reach this point in 20 years time with nearly all the increase in England.
To avoid the UK population hitting 70 million – nine million more than today – net migration needs to be reduced from 237,000 (the 2007 figure) to 50,000, and held there. This is a 75% reduction.
To stabilise our population at 65 million we need a 100% reduction so that immigration is equal to emigration.
Under Labour’s policies, immigration would fall by 8% - a fall of just 20,000 to 217,000. This is their own claim based on what would have happened if their so - called “tough” Points Based System been in place last year.
Under Conservative policies, immigration would fall by 27% - from 237,000 to 172,000.
This is despite the fact that
- the Immigration Minister has pledged “This Government isn’t going to allow the population to go up to 70 million” (The Times, 18th October 2008)
- the Conservative Leader saying he wants net migration to be reduced to “the sort of figure it was in the 80s and 90s” (BBC Radio 5 Live, 15th February 2009). Overall net immigration in the 1980s averaged about 17,000 a year. The average for 1990-97 was 45,000.
Commenting on the research, Sir Andrew Green, Chairman of Migrationwatch UK, said:
'The main parties talk tough on immigration, but they are trying to ‘con’ the British public. According to Government figures, we can expect almost another 10 million people in England in 20 years time of which seven million will be due to immigration – equivalent to seven cities the size of Birmingham. Current Labour policy won’t begin to address this. The Conservatives are barely better: despite their rhetoric, they have a lightweight policy that sounds tough but won’t deliver.
'Until the main parties decide to be honest about an issue crucial to the future of our society and until they get real about the measures needed, extremist groups will continue to have a ball,' he said.