EU Migration - An Emergency Brake is a Non-Starter

August 31, 2016

An “emergency brake” on EU migration to the UK is clearly a non starter. That is the conclusion of a paper issued today by Migration Watch UK in the run up to the Chequers Ministerial meeting on Brexit.

The report examines the EU’s arrangements with Norway and Switzerland. It then outlines the practical difficulties of measuring EU migration in a timely manner and of distinguishing migration for low skilled work which, according to the MAC, has only a neutral effect on our economy from skilled migration that is valuable and desirable.

The key difficulty, however, is to reach agreement as to whose hand should be on the brake. The British public will expect the sovereign control that they voted for. Yet this has no precedent in the EU’s arrangements with other states and would not be acceptable to them. Indeed, it is hard to see why they would now agree to a mechanism that they rejected even when the UK’s continued membership was at stake.

Commenting, Lord Green of Deddington, Chairman of Migration Watch UK, said:

The suggestion of an emergency brake is neither practical, desirable nor negotiable. It is simply a ploy designed to deceive the public and it should be roundly rejected. The solution lies in work permits issued only to skilled EU migrants or for shortage occupations.

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