Press Comment on Students and the Net migration target

September 11, 2015

Commenting on today’s reports that some cabinet ministers are pressing for international students to be taken out of the net migration target, Lord Green of Deddington, Chairman of Migration Watch UK said:

Everyone recognises the value of foreign students, cultural and economic, provided that they are genuine. The closure of 870 bogus colleges in recent years points to the scale of abuse that has been taking place. Indeed, on average over the past five years, non EU students have been recorded as arriving at the rate of about 150,000 a year with only 50,000 a year leaving. The results of exit checks which will become available in the next six months will cast some light on what lies behind these numbers. Meanwhile, at a time when migration pressures are mounting across the world, abandoning a key part of the immigration target would be a crazy signal to send out. It would also be deeply damaging to the credibility of the government on the top issue of public concern.

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