February 10, 2010
Even if the birth rate were to drop to levels not seen for 100 years the UK population is almost bound to hit 70m within 25 years unless there is a dramatic cut in immigration levels, says a new report out today.
An analysis of the Government’s own figures – issued on the eve of a speech by the Home Secretary on immigration and population - clearly shows that, even on such an unlikely birth rate, currently projected levels of immigration will cause the population of the UK to reach 70 million shortly after 2031 and then go on growing.
‘The Government is trying to suggest that a fall in the birth rate might keep our population below 70 million. They are desperate not to admit that their policies will mean a population increase to this unprecedented figure because they know it is of enormous concern to a great many people. Yet once again their own figures trip them up and no amount of obfuscation will disguise the facts,’ said Sir Andrew Green, chairman of think-tank Migrationwatch which carried out the research into the official figures.
The report points out that the latest (2008-based) Office for National Statistics (ONS) population projections clearly show the population of the UK reaching 70 million in 2029. The government suggests that such projections are unreliable partly because changes in the birth rate are unpredictable.
However, apart from the “baby boom” of the 1960s when the fertility rate for the UK peaked at 2.95, it has fluctuated between quite narrow limits since the mid 1970s. Since 2001 it has been increasing, partly because of immigration.
‘Having lost all the other arguments the Government are now cynically suggesting that the ONS population projections cannot be relied upon as an indication of future trends. Our paper nails this last gasp strategy and demonstrates yet again why a severe cut in immigration is urgently required,’ said Sir Andrew.