Damian Green defends Interim Immigration Cap

In an statement on the UK Border Agency website Mr Green said that “The interim limit was introduced to stop a rush of last minute applications ahead of the annual limit being introduced in April next year and the UK Border Agency has been working very closely with businesses to ensure that these arrangements have been implemented effectively. There are millions of people in Britain who employers can freely recruit and I expect companies to look to fill job vacancies from the resident labour force before they look for skills outside the UK. Last year, visas were granted to almost 36,000 workers from outside the EU while we currently have hundreds of thousands of unemployed graduates in subjects such as IT and engineering’.

He went on to say that ‘The ability of employers to fill vacancies is affected by a wide range of factors including their own training policies, pay and conditions and corporate reputation. In the vast majority of cases it is unfair to blame our limits for recruitment difficulties. We have consulted with business and other interested parties on how the limit should work and have also asked the Migration Advisory Committee to consult on what the actual limit should be. These consultations are now closed and we will announce the findings in due course.\’

Legal Challenge from the JCWI

Recently the Government announced that it would ‘rigorously defend’ any legal challenge to it over the implementation of the Immigration Cap from the JCWI who plan to bring a judicial review against the government. The JCWI has claimed that the limit has been implemented without proper consultation.

Mr Green said that “\’We will rigorously defend this challenge and are confident of success. The government has been clear: we will introduce our permanent annual limit on economic migrants from outside the EU from April 2011. While we decide how the annual limit should operate, it is imperative that we have interim measures in place to avoid a rush of applications from migrants before the new rules take effect. We are fully committed to reduce the level of net migration back down to the levels of the 1990s – tens of thousands each year, not hundreds of thousands. Introducing a limit on migrants from outside Europe coming here to work is just one of the ways we intend to achieve this.\’

Commonwealth Contractors

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