There is a growing confusion over the government’s target of reducing net migration to the tens of thousands by 2015 – at least, its chief adviser on immigration issues seems to think so.
As I reported last month, the 21 per cent increase in net migration over the past year, taking the total to 239,000 – more than twice the level the home office needs to reach in four years’ time – must have made uncomfortable reading for the department’s number crunchers.
However, speaking at London’s Global Immigration Conference yesterday, Professor David Metcalf, chair of the Migration Advisory Committee, suggested that the firm target of less than 100,000 was actually more of an “aspiration” for the government. He told the lawyers at the International Bar Association event:
There are certain tensions within the coalition about whether [the tens of thousands] is a firm target or an aspiration.
This is not the first time that such tension has been mooted. Read more