POLITICS

'Suppressed' Migration Report Contradicts Cameron, May, Farage

06/03/2014 11:56 GMT | Updated 06/03/2014 11:59 GMT
CARL COURT via Getty Images
British Prime Minister David Cameron outside 10 Downing Street in central London, on February 27, 2014. AFP PHOTO / CARL COURT (Photo credit should read CARL COURT/AFP/Getty Images)

David Cameron and coalition ministers have now published a report on the impact of migration on British workers after a wave of criticism for trying to sit on it to protect it undermining their rhetoric about migrants "displacing" workers.

The hitherto "suppressed" report will come as awkward news for coalition ministers who have tried to point fingers at immigrants for pushing native Britons out of work. Vince Cable has already taken aim at his colleagues for feeding "scare stories" about immigration.

The joint Home Office and Business Department report concludes that "there is relatively little evidence that migration has caused statistically significant displacement of UK natives from the labour market in periods when the economy has been strong."

In a line ministers will cling to in order to argue that migrants still have an impact on British workers, the report concludes that "some" displacement does happen, hitting low-skilled Brits, in a recession.

The report found that displacement was "more likely" when net migration was high and tends to affect low-skilled workers, with the authors writing: "where displacement effects are observed, these tend to be concentrated on low skilled natives."

It warns that there is "little evidence... of a statistically significant impact from EU migration on native employment outcomes".

The report also makes clear that any negative effect on British workers "dissipates over time", adding: "Any displacement impacts from one set of new arrivals gradually decline as the labour market adjusts, as predicted by economic theory."

So which politicians may find the report rather awkward reading?

Ministers who blamed migration for displacement of Brits