May 29, 2024
Economy

Starmer refuses to say whether he backs higher migration to grow economy


Labour’s official position is that it would like to reduce illegal immigration with a tougher approach to small boat migrant crossings. It also wants to reduce legal migration by ending firms’ reliance on cheap foreign labour.

On Thursday, a Conservative source said: “It’s no wonder Sir Keir Starmer can’t answer the question. He doesn’t know what to say because he doesn’t have a plan.

“The public should be in no doubt that if Starmer gets into Number 10, Britain would be overwhelmed with a tidal wave of immigration – just like under the last Labour government.”

The OBR forecast that the total number of adults in the UK would rise from 55 million in 2023 to 57 million by the end of the decade – a million more than its prediction in November.

It said immigration would add 350,000 more people to the population over the next five years than previously predicted.

Meanwhile, Rachel Reeves, the shadow chancellor, hinted that “savings” in public spending would fund extra resources for the NHS after Jeremy Hunt scrapped the non-dom tax status – the move that was supposed to pay for it.

Ms Reeves said: “We will go through every pound spent, every tax raised, and make sure that we can continue to fund those commitments. We will identify the savings we can make to fund this.” She stressed that the party’s election manifesto would be “fully costed and fully funded”.

Speaking to broadcasters during a visit to the City of London on Thursday, Sir Keir labelled the Budget a “con trick” and said voters want an election.

“In the end, the overall story of the Budget was, as ever, the Government give with one hand and take much more with the other, and people have seen 14 years of this. They are not going to be taken in by this con trick. They want an election and they want change.”



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