ONS employment figures


February 18, 2020

Dr Ben Greening, Executive Director of Migration Watch UK, said:

These figures show that the UK is as attractive as ever for migrant workers, with a new record of 5.8 million non-UK born people in employment. They made up nearly half of the growth in the number of workers over the past year.

The government trumpets record employment levels but that includes nearly 160,000 more workers from abroad on the year and still we see no pick-up of growth in wages or productivity. These are the realities and we can only hope that immigration proposals unveiled this week will be clearly focused on bringing numbers down.

Note to Editors

  • With youth unemployment nearly three times the overall figure, and double the rate of youth unemployment in Germany, it’s imperative that the immigration proposals unveiled this week protect UK jobseekers by not scrapping key protections such as the cap on work permits or the Resident Labour Market Test.
  • Since the EU Referendum, the growth in the number of non-EU workers in the UK has slowed considerably, except in the first two quarters immediately following the vote, which saw a rise.
  • See the ONS figures.


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