Could we – should we – stop migrants coming to Britain?
Immigrants take and create jobs. A basic tenet of economics that is ignored far too often!
Britain is convulsed with anxiety about immigration, with claims of too many EU citizens coming here, the benefits system being abused and wages being forced down. An expert on immigration looks at the evidence.
(By Jonathan Portes/Observer)
1) Didn’t the European Union just start off as a Common Market? When did free movement of workers start?
Long before the UK joined in 1973, the Treaty of Rome (1958) established what was then the European Economic Community, with four basic principles, called the “four freedoms”.
These were: free movement of labour, capital, goods and services. The objective was to establish a liberal market economy, where people could trade with each other across borders; free movement of labour was seen as part of that.
And the expected benefits were very much those that economists in general think you get from removing such barriers, allowing goods, services, capital and people to move freely…
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