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New report suggests UK economy could be affected if restrictions are placed on EU migrants

A new report from the Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford shows that employers in many different sectors of the UK’s economy could be affected if measures are introduced to restrict jobs EU migrants can occupy if the country leaves the EU.


The report ‘Potential implications of admission criteria for EU nationals coming to work in the UK’ shows that:


  • Most jobs in the UK labour market aren’t eligible for employer-sponsored work visas under the current immigration system


  • Most sectors of the UK labour market have a significant migrant workforce, many of these are lower paid roles
  • After a Brexit vote and if the UK’s immigration system is redesigned, selecting EU workers based on skills and pay, it is likely the UK service and labour industries will be hardest hit
  • There will be no clarity until after the referendum about what policies would apply to new EU migrants entering the UK following a ‘leave’ vote
  • An EU exit for the UK could mean tighter controls on migration of EU nationals for work
  • Free movement of EU nationals could remain largely unaffected if the UK follows models such as Norway, which, despite not being a member of the EU, still has access to the EU single market as part of the European Economic Area (EEA)


Read the full report here.