Following a national row over Poles taking British jobs and undercutting wages, the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has published a new study suggesting that European migration since EU expansion in 2004 has had no negative impact on either UK employment levels or wages.
The Economic Impacts of Migration on the UK Labour Market study is based largely on data from the Labour Force Survey and Department for Work and Pensions figures on national insurance numbers from 2001 to 2007, as well as a review of the existing literature and economic theory. The report covers the period prior to the recent downturn in the UK economy and the authors say that, should the recession turn out to be as bad as the mot pessimistic predictions, any impacts of migration on employment will be miniscule in the grand scheme of things. According to IPRR, migration might even have a small positive impact on economy.
“The effects of migration in both the short and long run are too complex for economic theory to deliver exact predictions about its impacts on employment and wages. However, the best previous evidence suggests that the overall effects of migration on wages are either insignificantly different from zero, or slightly positive. The evidence base on the effects of migration on employment in the UK, though relatively thin, suggests that the effects are not significantly different from zero. All effects noted are very small.” says IPPR press release.