Lower Immigration? You must be living in La La Land
It's official, immigration post-Brexit will dramatically decrease because of new measures the UK government has announced.
Whoops! That's the wrong envelope marked "La La Land".
In the real world we learn today that the number of people coming to the UK will not change a great deal after Brexit. Yesterday the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, said that we would be seeing "the end of freedom of movement as we know it" as the government grapples with their self-imposed priority of taking back control of the country's borders. The Express speculates that the cut off date for new EU nationals coming to the UK will be mid-March around the same time as Theresa May triggers Article 50.
The proposal for a new 5-year visa system for EU nationals includes taking away the rights for overseas workers to access benefits during their time in the UK.
Ministers will have been receiving representations from big businesses and specific sectors over recent months and no doubt they will have heard time and again that employers rely on EU workers to keep their businesses going. The NHS, is the obvious case, but the farming sector and the social care sector are also highly populated with EU workers who help keep the wheels of the country's economy spinning.
However, immigration has already been significantly reduced since the referendum vote last summer from over 300,000 to around 260,000 a year. This fall was not a result of specific government policy rather than external perception generated from what people in other countries have been seeing. Remember the rhetoric at the Conservative party conference? The Leave campaign's strongly anti-immigration angle? All of this will inevitably put people off from coming to work in the UK, regardless of what new visa system the government implements.
Today's Front Pages
Jobs and Livelihood
Financial Times: Brexit effect shakes up London dealmaking
The Independent: Government 'must act to avoid catastrophic failure' in NHS