Vince Cable has voiced once again his opinion of the controversial cap on immigration. He believes the attempt to limit immigrant workers may very well keep key specialized workers from settling in the UK. His statements added attention to the political move prior to this weekend’s Liberal Democrat Conference.
European Union Law prevents the UK from capping migrants from other European countries. The UK can cap those from beyond Europe seeking to settle in the UK. Government seeks to keep reducing the number of immigrants each consecutive year and the quota was put into place in July of this year.
Cable said: “The fact is that the way the system is currently being applied is very damaging.
“We have now lots of case studies of companies which are either not investing or just not able to function effectively because they cannot get key staff – management, specialist engineers and so on – from outside the European Union.”
Downing Street was quick to respond. “I don’t think that there is evidence that it is doing huge damage to the UK economy,” the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said.
“There is a clear Coalition policy on this and that was established pretty much on day one.”
John Cridland, deputy director-general of the CBI, said: “The interim cap is causing serious problems for many firms. The figures used were artificially low as they were based on numbers at the height of the recession in 2009.
“As firms are gearing up for growth, some are finding that they are only able to use a handful of non-EU specialist staff.”
In some cases companies are moving their headquarters to other countries and pulling out of the UK due to the restrictions on immigration. The Law Society also has voiced concern of companies losing out on growth due to the cap, in which then the UK might lose out on the company’s move to somewhere else.
The Law Society’s Chief Executive, Desmond Hudson said: “Britain’s ability to remain internationally competitive is under threat and our business community is also feeling the pressure at a time when we need to revive the economy rather than hinder it.
“The UK could lose large volumes of legal transactional work to other jurisdictions if we are not allowed access to the best talent in strong and emerging economies, such as China and India, as well as our partners in the US and Australia, for example.”