Employment minister, Alok Sharma made a statement recently which should be of interest to anyone who linked low wages to the EU’s “free movement of people” which allows unlimited immigration from the member countries of the EU. He said… ‘While EU nationals accounted for almost half of the UK’s growth in employment between 2014 and 2016, since 2016 that has fallen to five per cent. Yet since the referendum, there have been over one million more people in work in the UK. Employers are clearly already adjusting to lower immigration from the EU and it is UK workers who have filled the gaps.’
Put simply, of the one million extra workers in the UK economy since 2016, 500,000 would have been accounted for by EU immigrants if the referendum had rejected Brexit. As it stands today, just 50,000 EU nationals have been employed in new roles since the referendum in 2016.
Wages have also risen in the last three years which, in my opinion, shows that unlimited immigration contributes significantly to a low wage economy. As the head of UK and Brexit Research for Deutsche Bank wrote in an article in May: ‘The data shows that most of the recent wage gains have accrued to lower income workers. Since the second quarter of 2016, wages for both the 10 per cent and 25 per cent lowest paid workers have risen at their fastest rate for a decade and a half. By contrast, wage growth for the 10 per cent highest paid has been much more disappointing.’ His piece was entitled, ‘Brexit has delivered very nicely so far for many of the left-behind.’