Responding to the Prime Minister’s comments on the drawbacks of implementing an Australian-style points-based system for all immigrants, Seamus Nevin, Head of Employment and Skills Policy at the Institute of Directors, said:
“The Prime Minister is correct to highlight problems with points-based immigration systems and to be wary of trying to copy the Australian model. The UK’s points system for non-EU migrants is already hopelessly bureaucratic, governed by 13 different Acts of Parliament and creating 1,400 categories of immigrant.
“There are other reasons why we should be cautious about adopting the Australian approach, not least that the country actually has much higher levels of unemployment and welfare dependency among immigrants that the UK does. Rather than trying to pick an off-the-shelf model, the Government should instead launch a comprehensive immigration review that will enable it to design a British system that addresses public concerns, while still allowing businesses to access the skills they need to ensure economic success outside the EU.”