How EU migration could boost GDP, but still leave you poorer

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There are a couple interesting things on the subject of EU migration from the think tank Civitas today. The first is a blog post by Nigel Williams, looking at the claim that migration is good for the country because it creates economic growth.

The author makes the perfectly logical point that, with more people coming into the country, the proceeds of any growth are shared between a greater number of individuals. Supporters of large-scale EU migration only talk about Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures, when what is more relevant is GDP per person. In other words, Britons are only truly getting richer if the economy is growing at a faster rate than the population.

The second piece is  David Green’s Thunderer column (paywalled) in The Times, which calculates the benefits that EU migrants could be eligible for. Leaving to one side the wider effects that a migrant could have, by providing additional competition for our domestic unemployed, the article compares a low earning single person with a family consisting of a couple, of whom only one works and earns the same as our first person, along with two children.

The single person earning half the average wage pays nearly £1,300 more in tax than they receive in benefits. The family of four, however, will be eligible for benefits totalling £11,927, which is over £9,800 more than the household’s one earner pays in tax.

What ever one thinks about the advantages and disadvantages of welfare subsidies for families with children, we can’t escape the fact that they could prove very expensive when combined with an open door migration policy towards some of Europe’s poorest countries. Migrants from Eastern Europe could quite genuinely come here to work and, once they bring or start a family, still cost the British taxpayer a small fortune.

By James Harvard, Campaign Manager

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