Migrants 'will push house prices up by an extra 10%', Theresa May warns Home Secretary: ‘More than one third of all new housing demand caused by immigration'
Said research house prices will be 13 per cent higher over next 20 years than if migration were at zero
07:50 GMT, 13 December 2012
House prices will rise by more than 10 per cent unless mass immigration is controlled, Theresa May warned yesterday.
The increases in the years to come would go beyond other pressures on the housing market – dealing a blow to young Britons already struggling to get on the property ladder.
In a speech in London, the Home Secretary delivered a blunt analysis of the impact of Labour’s ‘open door’ immigration policy.
Home Secretary Theresa May announced plans for a simplified visa applications for overseas students
She said the influx had driven down wages for the working classes and placed huge pressure on schools and social cohesion.
Mrs May cited house prices as an
example of how demand created by migrants was having an impact on the
Her officials pointed to research by Professor Stephen
Nickell which predicted that, if net immigration runs at 190,000 a year,
house prices will end up 13 per cent higher over the next two decades
than they would if migration were at zero.
Currently, net migration – the
difference between the number of people arriving in the UK and those
leaving – is 183,000, though Mrs May has vowed to reduce it to the ‘tens
Busy: The need for housing is growing
She said: ‘More than one third of all new housing demand
in Britain is caused by immigration.
‘And there is evidence that without
the demand caused by mass immigration, house prices could be 10 per cent
lower over a 20 year period.’
Mrs May delivered her speech to the
Policy Exchange think-tank only 24 hours after publication of the 2011
The survey showed how, under ten years of Labour, nearly four
million immigrants joined the population of England and Wales.
In total, 7.5million people who were
born abroad were living here last year – and more than half of these
have arrived since 2001.
In a blistering attack on the Labour
years, Mrs May criticised the last government for failing to measure the
impact of immigration on public services and housing, and for assuming
it had no impact on the jobs and wages of the settled population.
She warned that mass immigration
undermines social cohesion by making it ‘impossible’ to establish the
relationships, family ties and social bonds that create a community.
Mrs May said the Migration Advisory
Committee, which is a panel of government advisers, had found ‘a clear
association between non-European immigration and employment in the UK’ –
with 160,000 British workers ‘displaced’ between 1995 and 2010.
Some 23 British workers were kept out
of employment for every additional 100 immigrants employed, she said,
adding: ‘For those on lower wages, more immigration means more workers
competing for a limited number of low-skilled jobs.
‘The result is lower wages – and the
people who lose out are working-class families, as well as ethnic
minority communities and recent immigrants themselves.’
In future, government impact
assessments will no longer assume that migrants make a positive
contribution to the economy by paying taxes and spending their wages.
The burden they place on public services will also be considered, she said.
Mrs May also denounced the student visa policy inherited from Labour as a ‘mess’ which was ‘abused on an industrial scale’.
Last night Sir Andrew Green, chairman
of Migration Watch, said: ‘At last we have a Home Secretary who is
honest about the consequences of mass immigration and ready to take on
the bogus arguments for it.’
Fewer than one in every 150
last-ditch immigration appeals is successful, ministers will reveal today as they launch plans to combat ‘spurious’ court actions. Critics say the appeals are often a ploy to let illegal immigrants and failed asylum seekers prolong their time in Britain.