27 MAY 2011
Immigration flows have hit their highest level for six years in a major blow for the Coalition pledge to cut numbers.
By Tom Whitehead | The Telegraph
Net migration in to the UK soared by almost half last year and is now close to the record levels of 2005.
It is the fifth quarter in a row that net immigration has risen signalling a worrying upward trend.
And two of the main drivers were a slump in emigration and a sharp rise in Eastern Europeans coming to the UK for work – two areas that will not be affected by the Government’s annual cap or other immigration measures.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) yesterday also showed:
• The number of foreign workers increased by 1.7 million in the last decade and accounted for all the increase in employment levels over the period.
• Work visas increased by six per cent in the year to March 2011
• Asylum claims increased by 11 per cent
• Migrants granted settlement in the UK increased by four per cent
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Rise in eastern European workers