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Foreign students boost immigration figures

Mark Easton | 11:55 UK time, Thursday, 26 August 2010

Today's quarterly immigration figures [285.83KB PDF] reveal a surprising increase in net migration into Britain driven, not by foreign workers, but by a big rise in the number of students coming to the UK.

While the number of work-related visas issued in the year to June 2010 fell 14% to 161,000, student visas have risen a whopping 35% to more than 360,000.

The figures present a stark reminder of just how difficult it is for government ministers to squeeze immigration without risking damaging the economy.

Foreign students are worth an estimated £8bn to the UK and the fees they pay for their courses underpin the finances of the higher education sector.

Tuition fees paid by overseas students can be up to seven times the price paid by their British counterparts.

Some universities have expressed anxiety that the greater cost and complexity of getting a student visa these days has put off many young people who had considered buying courses in Britain, although today's data suggest the tougher arrangements have not had a detrimental effect.

In fact, it appears that the UK's academic institutions are holding their own in an expanding and immensely lucrative international market.

There will be concerns that the big rise in foreign students coming to Britain is driven by young people whose interest is economic rather than academic. There is some evidence that this does happen but the controls have been repeatedly tightened.

Since February anyone wishing to study in Britain must first obtain a formal invitation from one of nearly 2,000 colleges on a register run by the Home Office.

Those taking a course below degree level must go through an institution on what is called the Highly Trusted Sponsors List, they must have English to a level just below GCSE, they cannot work and they cannot bring dependants into the country. The visa costs £199.

The net immigration figure in the year to December 2009 has risen to 196,000, compared with the final estimate of 163,000 in the year to December 2008. This graph shows how a fall in the number of people leaving Britain and a relatively stable immigration picture has resulted in the rise.

Graph showing total long-term international migration, UK, 2000-2009

What the graph does not show is that the fall in emigration is driven largely by a reduction in the number of Brits leaving the country - the "number of non-British citizens emigrating long term from the UK was 211,000, not statistically significantly different from the estimate of 243,000 in the year to December 2008".

To understand how the different categories of people coming into Britain have changed over the past decade, this graph provides a neat picture.

Graph showing UK entry clearance visas, 2005-2010

The squeeze on temporary employment visas and skilled workers from outside the EU (tier two) is clear, as is the huge increase in the numbers of student visas issued.

It is worth pointing out, of course, that student visas are temporary. Once the individual has completed their course they are normally required to leave the country without delay. Some may stay on, hiding from the authorities as an illegal immigrant, but the vast majority will return home unless they have a job and a new work visa to go with it.

So if the coalition sticks to its guns on reducing the net immigration figure to below 100,000, today's figures show that the job just got a bit harder.

Comments

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  • 1. At 12:40pm on 26 Aug 2010, PlanetEnglish wrote:

    It appears great that UK is rivalling the US in terms of capacity to attract students from India & China - paying 700 % more than what European Students are charged, because UK is stitiched up within the EU.
    It is against the following backdrop that we have to consider our Migration Policy - to India it looks like a Seggregation Policy, not a Migration Policy.
    Cameron & Osborne on their recent trip appeared to be looking for that elusive relationship with India - which they need to salvage the black-hole that they have got into with USA and the EU. Neither will give them the sanctuary that India provided for 250 years - along with cash flows -that helped incubate investments that created Australia, America and Canada as extensions of the English language.
    India never let us down - miltarily the 2.5 million British Indian Army was the reason we could hold off onslaughts not only in 1919 and 1945 but even in 1814.
    In return we have never been prepared to let them the same fundamental freedom that other Europeans got away with - in migrating to USA, Canada, Australia etc
    Even as the E European flood of migrants has shown, the first thing grinding poverty demands is a freedom to migrate to improve your lot. The EU created that Migration Policy - that allowed E Europeans to freely move inside EU to improve their lot.
    But when it comes to India, what we have consistently created is a Seggregation Policy not a Migration Policy - where due to color, we are not prepared to give them a fundamental freedom which millions of Irish, German, Scandinavian, E European, as well as English, Scottish, Welsh migrants have obtained for 250 years.
    Having signed off on the non-EU cap, again blocking off India, we are merely reiterating a Policy practiced for 300 years, even as the immigration problem has been created over the last 10 years by the flood of E European migration.
    It is against this backdrop that we have to consider our Migration Policy - to India it looks like a Seggregation Policy, not a Migration Policy.
    As I see it, 300 years of history where we have consistently behaved in this manner with India, is difficult to change.
    I cant see Cameron & Osborne budging on this cap.
    And I see no point therefore in seeking the sanctuary that India has consistently given us for 250 years, when we are not prepared to grant them the same fundamental freedom that we have given to those who have constantly betrayed us - our European cousins.
    So, while we pat ourselves on our backs for having 'charged' students from India 700 % that charged to our European cousins, and still being able to attract their best, to India it appears that we used them when we needed to incubate Australia, Canada, America etc for 250 years and then left India to perpetual thrid world citizenship - by zoning them off, via Segregation Policies / Migration Policies.

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  • 2. At 12:52pm on 26 Aug 2010, Tim wrote:

    So the immigration rise is down to hundreds of thousands of young people coming to this country to spend 5-figure sums annually on education, and thousands more on living costs. Let us hope that the Tories take a more flexible approach to targets than Labour, else we may see them cutting off our nose to spite our face.

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  • 3. At 1:02pm on 26 Aug 2010, whatsthisallabout wrote:

    I would say that most people's view of a migrant isn't a genuine student who is only in the UK for a relatively short time so perhaps they should be discounted from the overall picture. Personally it's the sight of homeless/jobless economic migrants living in squatter camps or people being exploited by unscrupulous employers in virtual slave conditions that is the most distressing and unacceptable. We really don't want to see social conditions in Western Europe heading back towards Victorian times so surely before people arrive in any foreign country for longer than the usual tourist period they should have to demonstrate that they have the means to support themselves and/or get themselves home. It wouldn't restrict freedom of movement - just reduce the risk of exploitation or destitution.

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  • 4. At 1:04pm on 26 Aug 2010, Edwin Schrodinger wrote:

    Squeezing immigration harms the economy. What utter nonsense. Mass immigration has damaged the economy, These of the sort of arguments Tony Blair was coming out with.

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  • 5. At 1:11pm on 26 Aug 2010, Furbos wrote:

    Planet English, great points there, having worked in India for 2 years and found it very hard to get visa's I just get so frustrated by our governments perpetual tit for tat approach in visa issuing. It is simple to me, here we have one of the biggest growing economies in the world, we need them, they need us lets just sort out our visa issues with one another and all enjoy the benefits. Obtaining a visa for India is extremely hard if you don't work for a so called big business and I can fully understand why. When we are so restrictive and objective to issuing visa's to some of the most professional, hard working and skilled people in the world no wonder the policy is returned. The looser in all of this is you and I, Indian's would pay taxes and vastly improve our economic growth over night with trade links and economic markets we currently struggle to compete in.

    Sort it out Cameron!

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  • 6. At 1:11pm on 26 Aug 2010, Furbos wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 7. At 1:16pm on 26 Aug 2010, You Are On Another Planet wrote:

    What utter nonsense. There is ample evidence that immigration has damaged the economy. This is the sort of spin Tony Blair used to come out with. What are we going to have next - it's racist to even discuss immigration? We all remember that one too. What a shame it is when senior BBC reporters come out with biased rubbish like this which reflects their political views more than it does the facts.

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  • 8. At 1:27pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    Re #1
    Europeans "improved their lot" by moving to undeveloped countries with a tiny native population. They worked hard and turned them into modern industrial economies. Today Eastern Europeans and Indians "improve their lot" my moving to richer fully developed countries and undercutting the local population. If they want to work hard they should try and turn their countries into a success rather than sponging of the efforts of others.

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  • 9. At 1:32pm on 26 Aug 2010, sunandsea wrote:

    There are many good and not bogus international students, workers who come to the UK for a better future, contributing to the UK economy paying taxes, paying high international student university fees and obtaining a degree from a UK institution which is rewarding and all the objectives achieved just to provide a better welfare to their own families in their home countries. I wish the government could not be to harsh on immigration and select the best skilled workers for a better Britain.

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  • 10. At 1:33pm on 26 Aug 2010, Pat berks wrote:

    You seem to be muddying the waters again Mark
    The real concerns people have are around the number of people granted British citizenship/indefinite leave to remain - who will then need permanent housing, jobs, NHS treatment, schooling for their children etc - and who can then bring in other family members to compound the effect. This is the group that needs to be controlled.
    Short term visitors such as tourists, students etc who leave after a few months/years are no problem (as long as we can make sure they DO leave)
    You state "Some may stay on, hiding from the authorities as an illegal immigrant, but the vast majority will return home unless they have a job and a new work visa to go with it."
    Do you have figures to back this up ? Bogus colleges /courses were notorious as centers for illegal immigration in the past - can we be sure this loophole has been closed ? It's a bit worrying that this sudden rush for student visas coincides with the tightening of the work visa rules - it's as if one door is closed and another one is being forced open

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  • 11. At 1:45pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    So this rise in immigration is due to more foreign students ? So that’s less places for British students, more expensive student housing and less jobs for British workers when they choose to stay both legally and illegally.
    How is this a benefit to the UK ?

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  • 12. At 1:50pm on 26 Aug 2010, Furbos wrote:

    At 1:27pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes: I'm white British before you start... That'll be the same countries we robbed and plunded then Shaunie to develop our large wealth and security we now base our economy on? Don't be niave to think that we did Eastern Europeans and Indians a favour by taking all their natural resources! India incidentally can hardly be described as a tiny native population! Have you ever been out in the real world?! and if immigrants are leagally provided with visa's and pay taxes then whats the harm? to me there is an endemic racist tone when it comes to this issue, people just believe what they want to believe by reading the Daily Express etc..... what a throughly depressing society to be associated with.

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  • 13. At 1:51pm on 26 Aug 2010, sindibis wrote:

    Re Shaunie Babes - The countries you call 'undeveloped' were actually thriving economies with large populations that the British plundered to 'improve their lot'. Now that the tables have turned, why all the fuss?

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  • 14. At 2:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    I'll make my point very clearly all immigration should be banned temporarily. And after students have studied for a degree, (goodness knows why here, we are constantly told we are all thick and lazy so why come here to study), they should all go home.

    At the moment I believe they have the opportunity to stay for two years to work, and of course after 5 - 6 years of living here they can all apply for british citizenship. We already have hundreds of thousands of young british people here without work, including thousands of british graduates, a million in total. If they can't find work, why is it given to foreign students? It just doesn't make sense!

    There is nothing wrong with any of these foreign people, I'm sure they are all very intelligent and good people. Why don't they help their own countries instead of turning their backs on their own people, they are needed desperately in developing countries.

    BUT we are an island, we are extremely overcrowded, we now have the most populated country in europe. The highest at 402 people per square mile, only Malta, (another island) is higher! When will people listen to that first?!!!

    Ordinary people on blogs state we need foreigners skills etc. There is only one group that need these people and that is the big conglomerate businesses. They exploit foreign workers by extreme pressure to work very long hours for low pay, something the british can't afford to do. So look to a more socialist attitude, and think about your compatriates, not the best way for businesses to make a load of money.

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  • 15. At 2:08pm on 26 Aug 2010, wozearly wrote:

    #8

    In fairness, a lot of European colonists exported wealth to their homelands and kept most of the proceeds for themselves, not the native populations (which weren't always that tiny), and not all former colonies became 'modern' industrial economies by any stretch.

    As for undercutting, its a well-established principle of competition that's not going to go away as its dictated by the customer/purchaser, not the supplier.

    If there are two adjacent shops selling the same product, one at £100 and the other at £50, you're likely to buy the £50 one. You can see this from the supermarket price wars over only a few pence with staples like milk and bread.

    Therefore as a supplier, where labour costs are always the single highest spend, if you can cut your wage bill in half because people (be that immigrants or not) are willing to take the job at half the current pay, then that's probably what you'll do.

    Banning migrants in the UK wouldn't change a thing, as companies will still be prepared to outsource to the migrants' home countries if labour costs are comparatively lower.

    From an economic perspective, you can look at it one of two ways. Either we protect our above-average global incomes by becoming self-sufficient and accepting the higher costs of living (and therefore lowered standards of living) as a result, or we allow our local income to fall towards the global average gradually through below-inflation wage rises (helped by migrants putting downward pressure on wage inflation), or we accept that we'll get short, sharp shocks as entire businesses migrate to countries with a cheaper cost-base, resulting in a spike of unemployment.

    The only 'positive' ways out of this are to ensure that the reason we're paid above the global average is because we can produce goods or services more effeciently, or of a higher value, whether through skill or innovation, than our labour-market competitors with a lower wage base.

    ...and for your point in #11, the foreign students heavily subsidise the running costs of universities. Without them, a number of universities would have to close or merge, or the course fees for British students would need to shoot up to cover the shortfall (think rises of 1000%), or the taxpayers would need to fund the difference.

    Just to be clear, I'm not a supporter of higher immigration. I just think we need to fully understand both the positive and negatives impacts of immigration before attempting to introduce solutions to any perceived problems.

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  • 16. At 2:14pm on 26 Aug 2010, robinhood21 wrote:

    #3 "whatsthisallabout" has, perhaps inadvertently, identified the main issue by referring to "most people's view of a migrant". The problem is that most people, in Britain anyway, only have ONE view of a migrant, whereas in reality there are many different reasons for coming to this country. Also, the figures that supposedly 'inform' that view can be misleading.

    For example, as a British-born British citizen who has lived abroad, I will have been included in the number of 'immigrants' to the UK when I returned in 2005. The first bullet point at the end of the main story states that "Of those granted settlement in the UK in 2009, 68% were dependants of those already living in the country". My wife, who came to the UK once I had found work here, is among that 68%; although she is also working, the Home Office class her as my dependent. However, those people with one view of migrants will interpret that as "too many foreigners bringing in their large families to burden the benefits system".

    You may have noticed from the dates that it took over three years from her arrival until she was granted settlement. This is despite her coming to the UK with a British citizen and marrying me in 2007. There were two visas before that, the first of which required her to leave the UK to apply for the priviledge of marrying me. In addition to these, there was also her citizenship application, which was finally granted this year.

    Damian Green claims that the immigration system is "largely out of control". This is an insult to British citizens like me who have jumped through hoops and (after being forced to provide detailed documentary evidence of my relationship and finances) have paid nearly £3,000 just to be allowed to live with my wife in my country.

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  • 17. At 2:15pm on 26 Aug 2010, robinhood21 wrote:

    #3 "whatsthisallabout" has, perhaps inadvertently, identified the main issue by referring to "most people's view of a migrant". The problem is that most people, in Britain anyway, only have ONE view of a migrant, whereas in reality there are many different reasons for coming to this country. Also, the figures that supposedly 'inform' that view can be misleading.
    For example, as a British-born British citizen who has lived abroad, I will have been included in the number of 'immigrants' to the UK when I returned in 2005. The first bullet point at the end of the main story states that "Of those granted settlement in the UK in 2009, 68% were dependants of those already living in the country". My wife, who came to the UK once I had found work here, is among that 68%; although she is also working, the Home Office class her as my dependent. However, those people with one view of migrants will interpret that as "too many foreigners bringing in their large families to burden the benefits system".
    You may have noticed from the dates that it took over three years from her arrival until she was granted settlement. This is despite her coming to the UK with a British citizen and marrying me in 2007. There were two visas before that, the first of which required her to leave the UK to apply for the priviledge of marrying me. In addition to these, there was also her citizenship application, which was finally granted this year.
    Damian Green claims that the immigration system is "largely out of control". This is an insult to British citizens like me who have jumped through hoops and (after being forced to provide detailed documentary evidence of my relationship and finances) have paid nearly £3,000 just to be allowed to live with my wife in my country.

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  • 18. At 2:16pm on 26 Aug 2010, PaulRM wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 19. At 2:16pm on 26 Aug 2010, robinhood21 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 20. At 2:36pm on 26 Aug 2010, schamael wrote:

    14. At 2:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:
    BUT we are an island, we are extremely overcrowded, we now have the most populated country in europe. The highest at 402 people per square mile, only Malta, (another island) is higher! When will people listen to that first?!!!
    =======================
    Err.. no, actually Holland (1,036 per sqm) is more densely populated than the UK (660 per sqm), as well as Belgium (919 per sqm). The term extremely populated you use is really an exaggeration; what do you label Macau SAR, in China, which has 48,000 people per square mile then? Even London has 'only' about 5,000 per km2. Macau is 1/10 of London in terms of area.

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  • 21. At 2:42pm on 26 Aug 2010, U14592213 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 22. At 3:25pm on 26 Aug 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    A number of issues arise:
    .
    (i) Foreign students coming to study in the UK ‘bring their family’. This is a luxury and, for most undergraduates, is an illogical state of affairs. Why is it allowed? Where do they come from, and what are the national characteristics of Return–to-home (ie. Do illegal over-stayers fall into distinct countries-of-origin)?
    .
    (ii) Nett migration is particularly influenced by fewer British emigrating. Also, larger numbers of the huge Polish immigrant population are returning to Poland from the UK. Thus the maintenance (and increase) of high (& higher) rates of nett immigration must be powerfully influenced by the non-return of the immigrants from the Asian Indian subcontinent, from Asia (elsewhere), and from Africa.
    .
    (iii) Family members immigrating to join extended families for permanent settlement in the UK compound the population problem by disproportionately rapid breeding rates.
    .
    (iv) The absence of information on the additional (albeit small) numbers and population, demographic and racial characteristics of Asylum Seekers
    .
    (v) The absence of any estimate of the numbers of illegal immigrants, the size of the illegal population and the population, demographic and racial characteristics of the illegals.
    .
    All of these are important for us to get a handle on the change and rate of change of the Great British Society, but they seem conspicuous by their absence every time a Governmental data set is released.
    .
    I am particularly interested to investigate the year-on-year accruals over the last 20 years from the Asian Indian Subcontinent and Africa; looking at population numbers, demographics, geographic distributions of origin and settlement & resettlement, religion, etc.
    Can anyone lead me to the key source materials?

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  • 23. At 3:27pm on 26 Aug 2010, jon112dk wrote:

    I think I've mentioned the 'student' visa route for settling in England several times in the past.

    Anyone who thinks all these people are (a) studying on real courses (b) intend to go back home, needs their head examining.

    Just on government figures (ho, ho, ho) we have an increase of population of 1/5 million in one year - a city the size of Birmingham every five years....and that does not take into account undocumented invaders or the massive birth rate from the same people.

    Is this rate of increase in population sustainable?

    Should it be openly acknowledged and serious planning take place for housing, maternity services, schools & other infrastructure?

    Is it time for the oppression to be lifted so that citizens can at least discuss the invasion openly?

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  • 24. At 3:37pm on 26 Aug 2010, Pat berks wrote:

    @ schamael
    However you chose to massage the stats we are well up the list in terms of population density compared with other similar European countries
    As England bears the brunt of immigration we should really use English figures rather than the UK - but even if we include Scotland/Wales we are still horrendously overcrowded as a nation. Do you really think it's valid to compare a whole country with City States like Macau (area 11 sq miles) ?

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  • 25. At 3:39pm on 26 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    #20 The latest published figures, bearing in mind that the south east actually has around 1,000 people per sq ml

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1306213/England-populated-country-EU.html

    And on this population density chart we are 51st above countries like India, out of a total of 239.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_population_density

    You may also like to note that I was speaking of europe not the world, and we now beat the Netherlands and Belgium.

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  • 26. At 3:45pm on 26 Aug 2010, John_from_Hendon wrote:

    How accurate are these figures for immigration?

    The report says - "exact sampling errors are not available." pg 6 ln 6 later it says "The relative standard errors for the latest immigration and emigration values are 7 per cent and 5 per cent respectively" pg 8 penultimate line

    etc etc so my guess after all this is that the figures could be +/- 20% on immigrants and emigrants. But we are presented their guess as fact!

    The same data might actually show anything from a net 10,000 leaving to about 400,000 arriving.

    This really is shoddy work and cannot be relied upon at all for any purpose at all - if we have any common-sense.

    There must be a better way to work out who is in the country and where they are so that provision for local services can be properly assessed and fairly provided.

    There is a curious graph on pg 21 (figure 5.2) that purports to show that for all years thee is substantial net negative immigration (i.e. emigration) from London to other parts of the UK - I wonder if any Londoner would find that credible! The source is credited to "Source: ONS, Internal migration within the UK". There is no mention of errors in this data - why? - how accurate is the data?

    There needs to a simple cheap way of measuring things - the data will already exist it is just not being aggregated properly for example banks and credit card companies know who makes transactions where and when for for example when buying the week's groceries - but I don't think any attempt is made to anonymise these data to provide a place of living for everyone. These data are being collected and it is not beyond the skills of the dp departments of the credit card settlement companies to provide it - but it isn't (I don't think) done. [I know that some supermarkets also ask at the till for the full postcode of customers from time to time even if the do not pay by card.]

    We need better data!

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  • 27. At 4:02pm on 26 Aug 2010, Radar wrote:

    Good article Mark.

    I see the immigration problem is that when many people in the UK see the word immigrant they read 'illegal immigrant'. Much of which I put down to reactionary headlines in papers like the Daily Mail and The Sun who have the sole aim of selling as many papers as possible irrespective of the actual facts behind a story. People do tend to just have one image of the scrounging immigrant and that is really unfair.

    The company I work for has 22 employees, it is an international development consultancy company based in the UK. Out of our employees 9 of them are hard working immigrants (+ 2 Irishmen) who have brought the specialist skills needed for our company to operate. They all pay their taxes and contribute to society, yet I have recently watched one of them jumping through hoops to get an extension on her visa. People may argue that she is taking a job a British person could do but I wonder how many British people have knowledge of development in China and can converse perfectly in Mandarin?

    I have to admit though I am surprised to see just how high the proportion of students is. I take exception to the argument that says they should be forced to go back once they complete their study; the likelihood is that they have built a life here and might not want to leave this behind. These people are likely to be very intelligent and as a result would contribute greatly to our economy. Also we should be proud that so many people want to come to the UK to study, it just shows that we do have some fine institutions (whom would really struggle without this income).

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  • 28. At 4:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    Well if this principle of being part of a former empire gave you settlement rights then I'd like the Italian Government to give me a nice house in Rome please. Although in ther interests of fairness I think the Indians should give back their railways, legal system, universities, postal service, democratic government, and all the other benefits of the 20th century that the evil British Empire gave them. Every country the British ruled ended up better off. The first thing they did after independence was join the Commonwealth. Hardly the actions of oppressed peoples ?
    As regards taxes. Well a British worker pays the same tax as an Indian one (if not far more due to higher pay). The difference is not employing a British worker costs the tax payer several thousand pounds a year in benefits. Not employing an Indian costs them nothing. Plus you have one more person in the country who needs housing, medical care, transport, social benefits, and protecting. So this argument that its ok to come to this country if you pay taxes is a total red herring.

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  • 29. At 4:06pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    13. At 1:51pm on 26 Aug 2010, tvtower wrote:
    Re Shaunie Babes - The countries you call 'undeveloped' were actually thriving economies with large populations that the British plundered to 'improve their lot'. Now that the tables have turned, why all the fuss?
    -----------
    Name any mass migration of British people to any country that was non-tribal ? In fact the total number of British people living in the Raj was far less than the Indian population of modern Britain

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  • 30. At 4:21pm on 26 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    #25 Sorry I should have pointed out I am speaking of England in my post. Scotland pop 5 million and Wales 3.3million have low populations as per land mass.

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  • 31. At 4:30pm on 26 Aug 2010, Furbos wrote:

    At 4:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes: Yes Shaunie we did set up a great infrastructure for India a point that many indians will happily point out if you have ever visited that wonderful country. What I'd like to point out is that as well as providing a infrastructure for them we also raped and pillaged them along the way. I think a great film for you to watch would be Ghandi, in that you might actually see a small selection of the appalling things we did to Indian's in order to set up the 'benefits of the 20th century that the evil British Empire' as you so wonderfully put it.

    I think in terms of the point of this article its so sad to see so many narrow minded people go on and on about being over crowded when we have such a wonderful country where you can walk for hours and hours without seeing anyone, there is only a handful of urban areas namely in London where the population is large but if people had actually seen other parts of the world then they would get this all into perspective, this country is far from full.

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  • 32. At 4:34pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    15. At 2:08pm on 26 Aug 2010, wozearly wrote:
    #8 Banning migrants in the UK wouldn't change a thing, as companies will still be prepared to outsource to the migrants' home countries if labour costs are comparatively lower.
    -------------
    You can't oursource agriculture, shops, mining, tourism and numerous other things to other countries.If the other jobs get exported then so be it. They weren't employing a British worker and at least the taxpayer doesn't have to look after a migrant, his familly or their descendants.

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  • 33. At 4:54pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    20. At 2:36pm on 26 Aug 2010, schamael wrote:
    14. At 2:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:
    BUT we are an island, we are extremely overcrowded, we now have the most populated country in europe. The highest at 402 people per square mile, only Malta, (another island) is higher! When will people listen to that first?!!!
    =======================
    Err.. no, actually Holland (1,036 per sqm) is more densely populated than the UK (660 per sqm), as well as Belgium (919 per sqm). The term extremely populated you use is really an exaggeration; what do you label Macau SAR, in China, which has 48,000 people per square mile then? Even London has 'only' about 5,000 per km2. Macau is 1/10 of London in terms of area.
    ----------------
    Couple of Points: Macau isn't in Europe. Belgium and Holland don't have that big empty remote bit called the North of Scotland. Although I'm sure we can house more migrants by building loads of social housing in the Lake District and motorways on top of the Pennines.

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  • 34. At 5:05pm on 26 Aug 2010, virtualsilverlady wrote:

    Supply and demand dictates prices so if so many foreign students want to come here to study then it should cost them more.

    Not only do they have access to some of the finest universities they have the use of facilities that no-one has been able to put a price on which are paid for by the British taxpayer.

    I'm sure we do not have poor students coming here from abroad so charging them more would help keep the cost of our own students' education down. But then as with everything else I'm sure someone will come up with an argument why this is not a good idea.

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  • 35. At 5:27pm on 26 Aug 2010, jon112dk wrote:

    31. At 4:30pm on 26 Aug 2010, Furbos wrote:
    At 4:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes: Yes Shaunie we did set up a great infrastructure for India a point that many indians will happily point out if you have ever visited that wonderful country. What I'd like to point out is that as well as providing a infrastructure for them we also raped and pillaged them along the way.
    ====================================================

    No doubt the british invaded India and many other countries and imposed ourselves upon them. At a later point they - quite rightly - organised and threw us out by passive resistance and/or force.

    The current invasion of England is on a scale which is out of all proportion to our occupation of India - a few tens of thousands of white men in a country of hundreds of millions. In England we have MILLIONS of Asians invading a, by comparison, tiny country.

    In the same way that Ghandi, and others, resisted our invasion of their countries, surely it is time that people in England are at least allowed to openly question the ongoing invasion here?

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  • 36. At 6:19pm on 26 Aug 2010, Whistling Neil wrote:

    11. At 1:45pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:
    So this rise in immigration is due to more foreign students ? So that’s less places for British students, more expensive student housing and less jobs for British workers when they choose to stay both legally and illegally.
    How is this a benefit to the UK ?

    =================================

    Universities like foreign students because they pay more than it costs to provide the service and are therefore profitable and subsidising UK students by providing income to the university other than from the UK students and government.
    Reducing the numbers of overseas students would not free up places for UK students (at same HMG subsidy) it would in fact lead to a reduction since the Universities would not be able to fund the current level of places.
    [VSL - yes you can increase the prices for sure but with overseas students you are in a global market of supply demand, but the principle is a reasonable hypothesis to explore]

    Whether there are overseas students or not makes no difference to student housing costs, friends who have student lets prefer overseas students largely becuase they are better tenants and cause less damage and problems, and so cost less to house generally. As they are not allowed to work and must support themselves they are shipping money into the UK to support themselves - this is wealth being added to the UK from another country in addition to their fees paid (in advance).

    Getting a degree here does not guarantee residence, the type of jobs illegal residents may obtain are not worthwhile for those who have paid to get a degree (and they value it more because they paid hard earned money for it) so either they apply for legal settlement (and then show up in the bars at the bottom of the graph) or usually go home to exploit their degree.

    Overall overseas students reduce our balance of trade and are therefore net wealth creation to the UK - not to mention all the British jobs their choosing to come here support.

    As to some of your other gems of ignorance:

    There is very little mining left in the UK - instead of mining our own coal for example we import it - i.e. not only did we let the jobs doing it be exported we now pay out hard cash to buy it back in.
    Shopping, ever used the internet and seen that actually a number of companies do export the business (to avoid VAT) by using the channel islands as addresses of convienience - some big names included.
    Agriculture - it probably has not escaped your notice that the UK is not self sufficient in food production - i.e. we have exported responsibility for feeding ourselves overseas. Additionally you will find that large chunks of the local industry rely on the migrants from Europe to do the quality of work the slack jawed locals turn their noses up at.

    You seem to reiterate the assumption that foreign people who work here legally then have somehow exactly the same rights as unemployed UK people, wrong wrong wrong.

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  • 37. At 6:26pm on 26 Aug 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    Hi, jon112UK @ 35:
    Of course you can question the ongoing invasion here. You can question it in all the media outlets of the UK and, as long as you do not overstep the mark, you will be published and heard.
    What you don't need is to be branded as a fascist, a right-wing bigot, a BNP member, etc, etc.
    It won't be the politicians branding you, it will be the media themselves!
    You will find many, many people who agree with your desire to discuss, debate, elucidate and promulgate. Unfortunately, your ability to get this translated into policy and practice will be confounded at every turn by an establishment afraid of its own shadow.

    I raised a series of points at #22 that might help you to frame the questions to place in the public domain and, with which, to galvanise a people and, thereby, a Government into coherent action.

    You will not need to be a Moseley, but you will need to shout as loud.

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  • 38. At 6:28pm on 26 Aug 2010, PaulRM wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 39. At 6:29pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    31. At 4:30pm on 26 Aug 2010, Furbos wrote:

    At 4:03pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes: Yes Shaunie we did set up a great infrastructure for India a point that many indians will happily point out if you have ever visited that wonderful country. What I'd like to point out is that as well as providing a infrastructure for them we also raped and pillaged them along the way. I think a great film for you to watch would be Ghandi, in that you might actually see a small selection of the appalling things we did to Indian's in order to set up the 'benefits of the 20th century that the evil British Empire' as you so wonderfully put it.
    ---------------
    You should also watch Braveheart for an accurate, unbiased and in-depth study of 13th century Scottish history.

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  • 40. At 6:36pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    34. At 5:05pm on 26 Aug 2010, virtualsilverlady wrote:
    Supply and demand dictates prices so if so many foreign students want to come here to study then it should cost them more.
    Not only do they have access to some of the finest universities they have the use of facilities that no-one has been able to put a price on which are paid for by the British taxpayer.
    I'm sure we do not have poor students coming here from abroad so charging them more would help keep the cost of our own students' education down. But then as with everything else I'm sure someone will come up with an argument why this is not a good idea.
    -------
    British medical schools giving priority to foreigners who pay more money in the prime reason we are unable to be self-sufficient in doctors. Tallented, hard working, British students are denied a career and the British people get inferior medical treatment.

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  • 41. At 6:38pm on 26 Aug 2010, wozearly wrote:

    #32 You can't oursource agriculture, shops, mining, tourism and numerous other things to other countries.If the other jobs get exported then so be it. They weren't employing a British worker and at least the taxpayer doesn't have to look after a migrant, his familly or their descendants.
    =======================================================================

    Actually, most of those can be outsourced. Only those which are geographically unique (shop location, tourism) can't be outsourced, but they could potentially face foreign competition. For example, you can buy things in the EU and have them shipped here, negating the need for a UK shop - and people don't *have* to come to the UK for tourism. They could select a different destination in another country.

    Agriculture and mining are concerned primarily with the end product sold to customers - if its cheaper to buy beef from Holland and ship it to the UK, then supermarkets will do that. Glance over the aisles and you'll see it happening with a lot of products that are produced locally.

    Equally, one reason we have so many fewer mines is that its a darn sight cheaper to mine, say, coal in other countries and ship it to the UK than it is to mine it here. ;)

    As we're very much a global economy these days, its not really possible to review immigration as an isolated issue that doesn't affect anything else. At least, not in my opinion.

    Outsourcing specifically matters a lot, as although we benefit from the cheaper prices of the end product we lose out in taxation as the VAT is reduced (cheaper price) and we probably get lower tax receipts from the company and workers who are no longer producing in the UK. Not the end of the world if those workers and/or companies stick around and do something else - but its potentially bad if they end up unemployed or migrating their headquarters outside of the UK - or if foreign competitors nudge them out of business.

    Its not unbelievable that bringing in migrants and families as taxpayers to do that job at a cheaper price in the UK brings a longer-term social benefit by discouraging outsourcing - particularly when there are more jobs than there are people skilled or willing to do them.

    On the other hand, if there's more people looking for work than there is work available, or the migrants over their time in the UK become net takers rather than net contributors to the UK, or if immigration itself causes social problems, then that could tip the equation.

    What I'm getting at is a similar point that other commentators here have been making. We have perceptions of immigration and what it means economically and socially as a society, which may or may not be wrong.

    What we should be doing is reviewing immigration analytically, making conscious decisions about what we want and what the implications are based on the best data and facts we have available.

    And if that means our views about immigrants have been wrong, whether we were too positive or too negative, we should be prepared to change them accordingly and stand up and call ourselves bigots.

    And on a personal level, I don't think we should be applying generalisations to the motivation or personal nature of immigrants as a whole. They're a pretty varied bunch, in my experience.

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  • 42. At 6:40pm on 26 Aug 2010, Stevem65 wrote:

    16. At 2:14pm on 26 Aug 2010, robinhood21 wrote:


    You may have noticed from the dates that it took over three years from her arrival until she was granted settlement. This is despite her coming to the UK with a British citizen and marrying me in 2007. There were two visas before that, the first of which required her to leave the UK to apply for the priviledge of marrying me. In addition to these, there was also her citizenship application, which was finally granted this year.

    Damian Green claims that the immigration system is "largely out of control". This is an insult to British citizens like me who have jumped through hoops and (after being forced to provide detailed documentary evidence of my relationship and finances) have paid nearly £3,000 just to be allowed to live with my wife in my country."

    Could not agree more with your comments. I'm embarking on a similar journey to yours - my fiancee is just one month into her initial settlement visa, but I'm under no illusions that it will be a long, hard and extremely expensive road to citizenship.

    I have just one question to all those who believe that ALL immigration should be stopped:

    Would you be prepared to visit my fiancee and tell her why she is not welcome in this country?

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  • 43. At 6:42pm on 26 Aug 2010, wozearly wrote:

    #36 Your comment hadn't been moderated in while I was typing my last one...I feel somewhat redundant, given that you pointed to exactly the same things regarding outsourcing that I did!

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  • 44. At 6:58pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    You seem to reiterate the assumption that foreign people who work here legally then have somehow exactly the same rights as unemployed UK people, wrong wrong wrong.
    -----------
    Of course its wrong. Migrants have the right to work for several times what they would earn at home. Unemployed British workers have the right to do the same job for less than its costs to live. Capitalists, the ruling elite and immigration apologists don't have a problem with this. The vast majority of the British people do

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  • 45. At 7:20pm on 26 Aug 2010, Stevem65 wrote:

    "40. At 6:36pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    British medical schools giving priority to foreigners who pay more money in the prime reason we are unable to be self-sufficient in doctors. Tallented, hard working, British students are denied a career and the British people get inferior medical treatment."

    Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence Mr/Ms Babes.

    Of course, only upright British Citizens know anything about medicine...

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  • 46. At 7:24pm on 26 Aug 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    virtualsilverlady wrote @ #34: "Supply and demand dictates prices so if so many foreign students want to come here to study then it should cost them more.
    Not only do they have access to some of the finest universities they have the use of facilities that no-one has been able to put a price on which are paid for by the British taxpayer."
    ......................
    Supply and demand already dictate the broad pricing policies of all the UK universities. They exist in a globalised and competitive society of tuition and research, and compete well with universities where the language of tuition is English (it would be really sad if they didn't!). To learn English English, American English, Canadian English, Dutch English or Australian English is a major part of the education-migration package.
    .
    British universities come a long way behind their USA counterparts in the provision of facilities, but compare adequately with the others. Many Chinese universities now outstrip their UK equvalents in terms of facilities, so the language of tuition in the country of the language must be the main draw.
    .
    Few Chinese students show themselves to be intellectual incompetents on arrival in the UK, and most eventually appear in the top quartile at graduation. The same is definitely NOT true of the Indian/Pakistani/Bangladeshi group, many of whom use the 'student ticket' to gain more permanent and less intellectual access to the UK.
    .
    Whilst some of the best students I ever taught hailed from the Subcontinent, their reputation is seriously tarnished by the unscrupulous behaviour of a larger number of their countrymen. That these exploitative individuals should gain preferential subsequent employment in the UK over our home-grown English graduates leaves me not a little sad.

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  • 47. At 7:43pm on 26 Aug 2010, wozearly wrote:

    Shaunie, that's slightly nonsensical.

    Anyone living in the UK 'enjoys' the UK cost of living. Its not reasonable to commute into the UK from abroad, and anyone working in the UK pays the same taxes be they a migrant or a British national.

    If the job is paying below the absolute minimum cost of living, no-one would take it except possibly for a very brief period - it would be lunacy unless there were absolutely no other options or you were using savings to boost your income.

    "Standard of living" is different. A migrant willing to work for less than the average UK worker would naturally end up with a lower standard of living, which they might find more acceptable if they're used to a lower standard of living than is common in the UK.

    And yes, this is potentially a problem as it puts downward pressure on living standards for UK nationals, who theoretically may have to accept lower wages to ensure they keep their jobs - assuming there are more workers than jobs in their field.

    If we blocked all immigration and emigration, then you avoid that downward pressure - but it creates new issues. For example, jobs that most UK nationals would consider undesirable (without intending any prejudice to hardworking bin men, I'll use the job as an example). The job may have been more desirable to migrants given that the salary still makes it a much better opportunity than in their home country.

    If there were no migrants, we'd see a bin man shortage. Either we accept a cost of living reduction (fewer bin collections), or councils have to pay more for the job to entice people away from other fields. That extra pay comes straight out of the taxpayer's pocket in the form of higher taxes which, you guessed it, leads to a cost of living reduction.

    The art is to pursue the most economically beneficial route for British society as a whole over the long run, whilst accepting any negative impacts in the short-term and, ideally, helping to offset them where possible.

    And for the record, I'm not a capitalist, member of the ruling elite, or an immigration apologist...I just have a half-decent grasp of economics and a dislike for knee-jerk reactions based on misinformation and prejudice.

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  • 48. At 7:53pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    45. At 7:20pm on 26 Aug 2010, Stevem65 wrote:

    "40. At 6:36pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:
    British medical schools giving priority to foreigners who pay more money in the prime reason we are unable to be self-sufficient in doctors. Tallented, hard working, British students are denied a career and the British people get inferior medical treatment."
    Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence Mr/Ms Babes.
    Of course, only upright British Citizens know anything about medicine...
    -----------
    You require medical treatment. Do you
    a) visit someone who studied medicine at Edinburgh and speaks perfect English
    or
    b) visit someone with a medical degree from the Islamic Republic of Very Poor Country in Africa who learned English from a call centre?

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  • 49. At 8:05pm on 26 Aug 2010, Stevem65 wrote:

    48. At 7:53pm on 26 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    You require medical treatment. Do you
    a) visit someone who studied medicine at Edinburgh and speaks perfect English
    or
    b) visit someone with a medical degree from the Islamic Republic of Very Poor Country in Africa who learned English from a call centre?"

    I required medical treatment today actually. I visited my local medical centre and was treated by an African female GP. I guess Shaunie would have made a bit of a scene and demanded to see a superior, British GP.

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  • 50. At 8:38pm on 26 Aug 2010, Joe Public wrote:

    Yet more sanctimonious BBC PC fundamentalism ! They may be required' to leave the UK but how many stay and become a further strain on our disintegrating socio-economic infrastructure ? Futhermore, those who decry the wrongs of the British Empire would do well to remember the brutalities of the caste system.
    I am dismayed at the level of mealy-mouthed,wooly-headed PC othodoxy of the 'limitless immigration' lobby. The same people who destroyed the UK economically are out to desroy it socially as well..........

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  • 51. At 9:39pm on 26 Aug 2010, stezza1000 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 52. At 10:29pm on 26 Aug 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    stezza1000 wrote @ 51:
    "I worked as an Entry Clearance Officer at the British High Commission in Islamabad for 2 years and the British Deputy High Commission in Mumbai for a further 2 years. I therefore have first hand experience of the fundamentaly broken immigration system implemented by Labour & in particular the points based system which has been an abject failure."
    .............
    Mark,
    is there some way we can put this man in touch with the Minister in charge of immigration policy?
    His full posting is cutting-edge, and his guidance has been running contrary to Government policy for the last many years.
    We sorely need people like him teamed up with key bods at the top to put a permanent stop to this abuse.
    THIS IS THE REAL THING.

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  • 53. At 10:35pm on 26 Aug 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    Re my #52,

    Having been in charge of university recruitment at more than one UK university in the last ten years, I recognise the truth in the assertions of stezza1000.

    For God's sake, stop allowing these young men and their shadowy backers to run rings round the immigration system using university as the excuse.

    Mark, if you ever read your blog postings, do the right thing and get something worthwhile moving.

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  • 54. At 11:02pm on 26 Aug 2010, stezza1000 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 55. At 11:41pm on 26 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    Mark you couldn't get a better offer than stezza1000 at #54.

    Here is inside information that BBC journalists hunt for, when it is offered freely to you why not take up the offer, Please.

    And stezza I have read your posts before, they make me weep, and I agree with you. The British people have got their heads in the sand here about immigration. They believe the hype put out by governments that we need these workers to do the jobs we won't/can't do. We had a booming economy in the '60s and again in the '80s I don't remember it being driven by mass immigration to our shores.

    At the moment, if for any reason we cannot import food, we can only feed 32% of the population, so we will need 35 million volunteers to starve to death, come on step forward! ; )

    Remember once the oil runs out the food won't be able to get here either, let alone make fertiliser or tractors working, it'll be back to horses and manure.

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  • 56. At 00:11am on 27 Aug 2010, degrim wrote:

    Hi all there are some interesting point raised here. I have several years of working in immigration at port and can tell you that I get to see the good the bad and the ugly when it comes to immigration.

    The main point that needs to be noted is that the BBC has yet again adopted an overtly 1 dimensional look at foreign non EU students and focused its attentions to the perfectly accptable face of those international students who are studying a well recognised degree at a university as opposed to the dreaded 'diploma' at a private college. (many of which, but by no means all, have been found to act as facilitating institutions to bring in froeign students) The vast majority of students encountered where I work are of the latter - studying at private colleges many run by foreign nationals themselves - in fact it is rare to see a university student for love nor money. So when the BBc try to illustrate a point about the importance of foreign students to the UK economy and the univerisities themseles it should try and remember to be balanced, investigative and factual. One statistic would perhaps be the number of overseas students attending recognised universities studying a degree course against those studying at private colleges often on very basic courses well below their capability. We see students who have masters degrees from the sub continent studying diplomas in tourism or business management awarded by private awarding bodies that could be argued are not worth the paper they are written on.

    A second point that needs to be raised is tha number of students who are now switching to asylum as their colleges may have finally been caught up with by UKBA compliance teams. These become much harder to remove - especially if they have UK born children.
    It was not so long ago that a group of eminent economists after months and months of analysis and research concluded that the net benefit to the UK from immigration overall is negligable yet we are always told it is vital.

    One of the points raised by another respondent makes a very good point that with the shortage of places available this year to UK born students it is politically controversial to champion the benefits of international students. I am not against them by any means but it has to be controlled as not to be of the detriment of UK citizens.

    Also note that after 10 years of continuous stay in the UK as a student or combined with any other category any foeign national can apply for indfinite leave to remain or permenant residencey (the step before British citizenship) Trust me - many students are not short term and appear have this in mind from day one.

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  • 57. At 01:30am on 27 Aug 2010, laomao wrote:

    Foreign students not only boost immigration figures but also financial figures. Another piece of news (walesonline, 13 Aug 10) claimed 1600 or so foreign students add £2.4M a year to the city of Cardiff. According to the news (The Independent, 16 Nov 07), the year 2006 saw 157,000 overseas students coming into the country, 52,000 of them were from China, 16000 from India and 14000 from the US.

    I have not yet seen any official statistics for the most recent demographics of overseas students. If anyone knew, please share it with us. Let's assume that the percentage stays the same, then that makes it somewhat 118000 overseas students from China. Many people may see the intrusion of the Chinese students and other non-European students, especially the ones from Asia, as a major threat to the civilisation and cultural unity of Britain. I see that as an opportunity, an opportunity to revive the British economy, an opportunity to open up the minds of those arrogant and short-sighted ones.

    I remember that there were lots of circulations on blames of foreign students dragging the British education quality standard to its knees in the last two years of so. Lots of people said their university peers only have the English ability equivalent of teenage kids. I really thought and still think comments like that are so unfair. True, someone may only speak from a limited vocabulary but they may be very good in written English. I have seen many of my peers (overseas students) achieving high grades. There was a Chinese girl, who had first at degree level, distinction at master level and gained a full scholarship to do a phd. If you think many people do not speak good English, how many of you can speak better level of Chinese?

    The whole idea of keeping the immigration level down to the 1990s is just a joke. A typical reflection of the British arrogance and ignorance to the global context. Things progress, not regress. The world has become more populated and globalised. Cross-continental transportation, global communication and the free flow of information on the internet have resulted in a global village, with the possibility of someone living in any part of the global as one may wish. The only sub-context is that all that fancy freedom is subject to economy, politics, and cultural rejection. Here the Coalition Government’s new immigration policies being a fine example of one of the barriers mentioned above.

    What I intend to say is that, people should look forward, not backward. The problem of Britain’s immigration is not about the number of people who come and stay in the country. It is about all the other types of problems faced by the British people. Immigration is just a nice excuse to say, “Look! We are fine. Let us get rid of those immigrants. May peace and prosperity be with us thereafter and forever.” Imagine if the current British society was one that people have huge amount of wealth to lavish, endless benefits to claim, free education and health care, and the politicians have banks of cash to be spoiled with, who really gives a whisper of doubt about immigrants. Regardless of those immigrant high achievers, and the notable contributors to the British society, as long as they do the dirty jobs that British people do not dare to do, you would be fine with them. The more the better!

    However, we are not in that kind of position and Britain is not a country of endless wealth, but factually speaking, of endless debts. Yet people still tend to think they are living in a better economy. Illusionists tend to draw the image of the end of economic recession. With a bit of economic knowledge, I think otherwise. It is never going to be the same as the global economy is witnessing a shift of power and wealth, from the West to the East. Even when the economy was recovered in the future, it would never be the same, and people should never spend in the way they used to. Whether you believe it or not, it is happening right now.

    Immigration issue is just one of the symptoms of a highly complex economic, political, and social disease. Just to treat immigration for the sake of it does not address the fundamental issues. What is more interesting and ridiculous is that Britain needs immigrants to keep up the economic stake but is not willing to have them living in the country or even coming into the country. Mr. Cameron addressed in Hyde Park on 12 Aug and made a special plea to the Chinese tourists to save the country by spending a bit more. As quoted, Britain’s current share of the Chinese tourism market is only 0.5%, to increase that to 2.5% will bring billions of pounds and many jobs to the country. On the other hand of his plea sits the ever tightening visa rules and immigration policies.

    In essence, Britain, or shall we say the British government, being either the previous Labour or the current Coalition, want the money of the oversea visitors and students, but don’t want them to stay. In many cases, they want their money but are not willing to let them come into the country. How contradicting and hilarious is that!

    Some of you readers may think my comments are not valid. I happen to be a Chinese person who have studied and worked in the UK for more than 7 years. Like Radar commented previously, there are many hardworking and hopefully intelligent people out there doing their bit for the sake of Britain. I work in the education sector running my own business to promote cultural exchange and educational collaboration between China and Britain. I make money from it and I pay tax and spend pretty much all the rest of money in London, on rent, food, travel, leisure and others. I hear a lot of my British partners to complain about the visa system and the incredibly low efficiency in issuing student visas. Some of these language schools and universities lose lots of money because of rejected or delayed visas.

    I met the honorable David Miliband on Tuesday evening and listened to his perspectives on UK-China relation. He stressed the importance of keeping an open mind, especially for education initiatives, and to work with countries such as China, India, and others in order to assist Britain to tackle the problems. He seemed to very anti-conservatives, and anti-Coalition, which I completely understand. I am not a Labour supporter and do not have political preference. But I think he made a point on the current immigration policies.

    Isolating immigration issues and only attempting to work them out in the immigration bracket is not the way forward. The cap does not fully address the wider context of the far-reaching economic, political and social issues Britain face. And it is not so clever to say no to the ones who have the money.

    Wake up, people. It is the people who make a difference to the society that we live in. Not the government! The government only facilitates things and does the PR stunt. People in Britain should adjust their views towards immigrants and globalisation, which is the only way to better understand the current immigration related issues and to make the best of it to tackle other deeper issues.

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  • 58. At 02:24am on 27 Aug 2010, Hollandsemum wrote:

    Re:Comments by Shaunie Babes

    Claiming that that foreign students displace local students and that the UK is the most densly populated country in Europe indicated a lack of thorough thought and research. As has been mentioned before, the Netherlands is, and long has been, the most densly populated country in Europe. As far as removing opportunities for British students is concerned, charging a higher fee for foreign students allows the universities to build up the funds needed to expand facilities and spaces allowing more British students in at better prices and to offer scholarships. It is no longer the day when only landed gentry/very wealthy may apply and attend (and members of my family worked extraordinarily hard to go to university in those days) which in and of itself means more British students attending, particularly those that cannot just flatly afford the tuition and fees. In essence the foreign students subsidize the native students. The universities may simply not be keeping up with expansion as fast at British applications increase. In that case, maintaining the foreign contingent can only help by funding that growth. Furthermore, if a university wishes to be recognized as top quality, they must attract the top people in the fields of study they provide. Today that usually means global interface. So, if they want to attract the best talent to maintain that standard, they will need to look at everyone applying so that they don't miss out on someone who could be the next research genius. In addition, I would venture to guess that most foreign applicants contact those universities which are globally top ranked, which would also be a percentage of the total universities available in the UK. Perhaps you could find a local website showing the distribution of foreign students across UK universities. My last thought is this, Cambridge states on it's website that it only accepts approximately 10% of the number of foreign undergraduate applicants. I believe that in terms of total undergraduate attendees, that will be an even smaller percentage.

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  • 59. At 05:41am on 27 Aug 2010, faniya wrote:

    We have the same problem in Australia - hordes of ill-intentioned applicants from 3rd world countries (mainly India) who exploited a loophole to 'study' cookery and accounting courses (for godsake). The government received bipartisan support the shut the whole sector down and half the number of unskilled, lo-rent applicants. No complaints from anyone but the charlatans who ran the dodgy colleges: who are, almost invariably, nationals of the students they're 'educating'. Britain: ignore the PC-brigade and slam the door shut. These people are not a net-positive to your economy or way of life.

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  • 60. At 06:37am on 27 Aug 2010, is it true wrote:

    I just come back from UK after study, not by choice I was denied an extension. But I do understand what the both side saying about the immigration figures. after living in England for 4 years I also start loving it and if I get chance I would love to live there, but also from the education I get from UK, I do understand the problem we outsider create in UK but there is no question people doing good to UK in skill wise and economic wise. At the moment I would say 4 basic way to go to England,
    1. Settlement - govt can do very little about that. But putting English requirement and permission before marriage is a very good and efficient step.
    2. illegal worker- I think England need to be more efficient and effective in controlling illegal people, and need to change lots of low so border agency can work more freely, but punishing business owner for employing any illegal worker is a very good step I think operation cost wise it’s a very very good approach and that will give benefits in long term to control illegal people.
    3. Skill worker from the fact and figure and rules to apply for it is already a very good success and it’s the best way so far. But I think it is bit harder than it should be but UK govt can review it after they establish there control and economic turmoil gone, as UK govt have to arrange work for the British citizen.
    4 students - most important and problematic area is student. but first I would say there is nothing to scare about the number at the moment as because of the initial point base mistake by the policymaker there is lots of student arrive in UK, but control over the collage and making sure they leave after the study will automatically increase the number of leaver in next 2,3 or 4 years when this student will finish their study as if they are not good enough they can't find work so eventually they have to leave at least a bigger portion, now the issue about non EU student economic value towards educational institute, I would say they foreign student paying good money but that money there shouldn't be more college or university to be opened as after all this are not profit earning business, they need good money to run the education smooth and in high quality, but govt have to control over the collage and uni. But also a positive step taken by govt to introduce English testing for international student, I think it will reduce the student number in next few years dramatically, at least from south Asian countries.


    to whom you think about 2 years work after the study I would say when a student finish study in UK they need to start their career in same culture where they study otherwise their study will not be completed without good first few years of work experience. And for that UK should let them work, but if a student is not good enough then he/she have to leave anyway as they will not have another option as UK govt don't give them any benefite so there is no problem in there. And after 2 years if they are good enough to get skill migrant then those people are needed for the UK economy. As high skill worker visa is very very very very hard.


    What ever i write in here is from my personal experiance while i was studing in UK. so i might be wrong.

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  • 61. At 07:07am on 27 Aug 2010, davecox wrote:

    these figures show that one in every 57 of the population arrived in our shores last year! this is unsustainable & will lead to violence and unrest if allowed to continue.
    This country cannot obsorbe this amount of people in terms of roads, housing, loss of culture, loss of countryside ect.
    This is a direct result of Mr browns & Mr Blairs decision to " rub the uk's population's face in multicultureism". As reported in the sunday mail some 5 months ago.
    Mr Cameran act while you can & we all must ensure that we never vote labour ever again!

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  • 62. At 07:41am on 27 Aug 2010, Daisy Chained wrote:

    There are some startling possibilities behind these figures. Small, and carefully directed increases in fees would presumably negate the need for charging UK students tuition fees at all, or we could consider having more courses available provided we can fill them.

    We already know the importance of tourism but isn't education an even better 'service economy' money spinner? Four years average living expense of an overseas student has to be worth a small fortune. So what is the Government's business model? Obviously not the correct one given the reduced spending.

    No wonder rental property and retail are doing so well.... No wonder the place is bulging.... No one can afford to leave.... We've never had it.... so good....

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  • 63. At 07:51am on 27 Aug 2010, paganpaul wrote:

    Net immigration rises because women come over here on student visas, get pregnant, drop out of courses, go underground and wait a few years before meeting up with a dodgy solicitor who then gets her and her child leave to remain via Human Rights Act challenges and then she proceeds to sponge off benefits and social housing for the rest of her life. Her children (there will be more than one by now) will be involved with gangs from the age of 10 and will count as a UK native as far as the Home Office (which has a racist policy of encouraging as much immigration as possible to dilute the horrible English - a policy dating back to the Norman Conquest).

    What we need to do is to stop all immigration and return people of non-UK backgrounds who have entered the UK over the last 30 years back to where they came from. After that, visas should only be granted to citizens of countries which accept their own citizens when they are asked to leave by us.

    There are no benefits to immigration. Our country is overcrowded and there are no shortages of workers. There is a shortage of qualified young people because our governments have not allowed our children to get a proper education - sacking all our teachers would also be a good idea.

    Immigration is a problem because all governments over the last 1000 years have been racially opposed to the English - foreigners are just so much more compliant.

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  • 64. At 09:02am on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    A little anecdote, not really relevant to this report, but the consequence of mass immigration..

    My sister has an unusual hearing loss, and lives in the sticks. Her doctor told her that locally the hospitals couldn't deal with it, and her best bet was a London hospital. Nowadays you have to make your own appointment, which proved very very difficult, and she didn't get one for 10 months but waited as she felt they could help her.

    Everytime she has visited this hospital, several times now, she has never yet spoken the an english speaking receptionist, at the moment they are all french speakers with a strong accent difficult to understand when you have a hearing loss. The irony being my sister is a receptionist and can't get a job!

    Everytime she goes the waiting room is full of foreign people, usually they can't speak English, they have to wait for interpreters to arrive to translate the doctors words. My sister has been very lucky, she has been issued with the latest hearing aid, probably very costly, but so has every foreign person in this hospital, she has watched them all come out with this very expensive device.

    What I am saying is the NHS is failing because we treat the world for free, these people can't even speak english, and yet they are treated the same as a british person who along with their family have paid into the NHS all their lives. It just doesn't make sense, how can the British afford to treat everyone in the world for free?

    This is just one persons experience but how many times is this repeated across Britian.

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  • 65. At 09:14am on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    #61 I find your figure absolutely extraodinary davecox, is it really as many as that! Where on earth are they all living, as we have a dire housing shortage, no wonder everywhere is so crowded, especially in the south east.

    these figures show that one in every 57 of the population arrived in our shores last year!

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  • 66. At 09:54am on 27 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    'Foreign students are worth an estimated £8bn to the UK and the fees they pay for their courses underpin the finances of the higher education sector.'

    .........................

    Mr Easton

    Where are you getting this figure from?
    How is it calculated?
    What are the 'costs' to British students, British workers and the long term interests of the British economy ... by not having enough of our home grown able and talented getting through to reach their full potential in education and the UK labour market.

    I think that Licence payers are getting an extremely raw deal here from the BBC - spin, lies and manipulated and misleading speculative and unsubstntiated statistical estimates from the BBC ...

    Why don't you just come clean Mr Easton and admit that you're either not big enough and strong enough to stand up to the libertarian conspiracy against British students and British workers that now engulfs every aspect of the BBC and e.g. what is left of our British society and/or you're actually part of the Libertarian BRitish sell out conspiracy that is ruining the lives of our British students and workers ... by greedy foreign influenced employers and educational institution gleefully finding any and every excuse to train or employ a foreigner at the expense of a British student or British worker.

    We heard more lies on this from the BBC R4 one o'clock news yesterady with a representative of the UK university system syaing that foreign students were not taking places from British students ... because they were 'different numbers'.

    Isn't it time the BBC came clean of these issues and started reporting the 'Mrs Duffy issue' properly ... and started asking some proper questions about these issues.

    If the foreign studnets are worth £8 billion pa (to the British economy?) as you claim Mr Easton ... then that must be at the cost of £8 billion to British students and workers ... and how much of that £8 billion actually stays in the UK and is not converted to other/foreign currencies to be 'sent and spent' overseas ... thus weakening the British money supply and economy further.

    Please get your facts right Mr Easton ... some of do not appreciate paying a BBC licence fee in order to receive lies, spin and deliberate and partial misninformation of the most important of topics ... our young persons future (if they have one) in the UK.

    The BBC, as nearly always, has missed the elephant in the room concerning University admission fees and the 'Mrs Duffy issue'; as the last labour government massively expanded student University numbers without providing proper resource allocation for the Universities. The 'lazy management' of the 'laid back' and grossly inefficient UK university sector cleverly made tuition fees a big issue in order to preserve their laid back college lifesyle, benefits and pensions etc without doing what is really necessary ... fully reforming the UK University sector so that it matches the needs of British employers, students and British workers. NOT A MENTION OF THIS FROM THE BBC.

    The losers from this are the British taxpayer parents and their children and students.

    When the 'government axe' falls on waste and inefficiency in October - I hope that the BBC gets looked at first in terms of its 'Libertarian Anti-British/English student and worker conspiracy'.

    University numbers are entirely a political choice ... the costs and benefits of replacing British students and British workers with foreigners ... has never been properly and independently estimated ... only the 'vested interests' are providing a £8 billion estimate.

    Can you please be good enough to address and amend your biased and bad reporting on this for the benefit of at least one BBC licence payer?

    Alternatively, this all equates to £8 billion that has been misappropriated from British taxpayer parents, students and workers ... is that enough of a crime to spur Mr Easton into making an apology?

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  • 67. At 11:34am on 27 Aug 2010, bigjeeze wrote:

    13. At 1:51pm on 26 Aug 2010, tvtower wrote:
    Re Shaunie Babes - The countries you call 'undeveloped' were actually thriving economies with large populations that the British plundered to 'improve their lot'. Now that the tables have turned, why all the fuss?

    This is the sort of ill informed claptrap that the apologists have been touting for years. It is not a valid or reasoned argument at all. History is totally full up with everybody exploiting whoever they could - it is a timeless occupation and still goes on everywhere. It does not confer any right of reply or compensation . I would like TVTower to quote me the thriving industries that the British ( French,Dutch,etc etc0 raided - I think he would find it difficult to find any.

    We do need to control immigration because we have a problem - too many people and dwindling resources to manage them. It's a fact.

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  • 68. At 12:05pm on 27 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    58. At 02:24am on 27 Aug 2010, Hollandsemum wrote:
    Re:Comments by Shaunie Babes
    Claiming that that foreign students displace local students and that the UK is the most densly populated country in Europe indicated a lack of thorough thought and research.
    --------------
    The figures show that England is the most densely populated country in Europe not the UK.Either you don't know the difference or you can only make your point by desperately having to add on the uninhabited parts of Scotland and Wales
    ------------------
    As has been mentioned before, the Netherlands is, and long has been, the most densly populated country in Europe. As far as removing opportunities for British students is concerned, charging a higher fee for foreign students allows the universities to build up the funds needed to expand facilities and spaces allowing more British students in at better prices and to offer scholarships. It is no longer the day when only landed gentry/very wealthy may apply and attend (and members of my family worked extraordinarily hard to go to university in those days) which in and of itself means more British students attending, particularly those that cannot just flatly afford the tuition and fees. In essence the foreign students subsidize the native students. The universities may simply not be keeping up with expansion as fast at British applications increase. In that case, maintaining the foreign contingent can only help by funding that growth. Furthermore, if a university wishes to be recognized as top quality, they must attract the top people in the fields of study they provide. Today that usually means global interface. So, if they want to attract the best talent to maintain that standard, they will need to look at everyone applying so that they don't miss out on someone who could be the next research genius. In addition, I would venture to guess that most foreign applicants contact those universities which are globally top ranked, which would also be a percentage of the total universities available in the UK. Perhaps you could find a local website showing the distribution of foreign students across UK universities. My last thought is this, Cambridge states on it's website that it only accepts approximately 10% of the number of foreign undergraduate applicants. I believe that in terms of total undergraduate attendees, that will be an even smaller percentage.
    -------------------
    Most Universities can be entered with middle to low A levels. They do not attract the best from anywhere. The two hundred thousand increase in foreign students are not all nuclear physicists off to Oxbridge, they were after comparatively lowly arts and technical qualications. It is interesting to note that before this wave of mass migration unversities were free, now a degree costs 20 grand. So these foreign students aren't doing a very good job of subsidising the the British ones are they?

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  • 69. At 12:06pm on 27 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    57. At 01:30am on 27 Aug 2010, laomao wrote:
    Foreign students not only boost immigration figures but also financial figures. Another piece of news (walesonline, 13 Aug 10) claimed 1600 or so foreign students add £2.4M a year to the city of Cardiff.
    ----------------
    Thats £1500 a year per student which is far less than Cardiff would spend giving them council services, policing and health care. Not to mention the benefit costs of a displaced Welsh worker should they take a part-time job.

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  • 70. At 12:07pm on 27 Aug 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    49. At 8:05pm on 26 Aug 2010, Stevem65 wrote:
    I required medical treatment today actually. I visited my local medical centre and was treated by an African female GP. I guess Shaunie would have made a bit of a scene and demanded to see a superior, British GP.
    --------
    I'm sure the people of Africa are delighted its doctors are earning 100K a year treating people in this country while millions of Africans die of preventable diseases. The NHS foreign recruitment policy is one of the biggest killers in the third world.

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  • 71. At 12:13pm on 27 Aug 2010, Pat berks wrote:

    The brilliant and informative post by stezza1000 @ 51:
    "I worked as an Entry Clearance Officer ...etc"
    - seems to have been removed.
    Any reason ? Hopefully it's because Mark is going to write an article based on the comments, or it's been forwarded to people in a position to do something about the abuses detailed.

    Surely it didn't break any house rules as it was level headed and fair throughout

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  • 72. At 1:18pm on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    #71 I hope your idea is correct Pat, but it's probably censorship which is alive and well in BBC land. I read both posts with great interest, he has posted them before, I don't know if they were taken down as well. I couldn't see anything wrong with them, but perhaps one of the government drones felt he broke the secrets act.

    I hope the stasi don't know where I live!

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  • 73. At 1:31pm on 27 Aug 2010, W_E_Coyote wrote:

    Two simple points:
    1. The news a few days ago was saying there was insufficient university places for graduates. Where have these additional places come from to support overseas students? Surely local students should get first dibs on any tertiary education places. I smell a rat!
    2. PlanetEnglish, you are obviously not on Planet Reality. Population of India: 1.2 billion. If every Indian person that wanted to live here was let in, exactly where do you propose we would house them all and what would happen to our standard of living on this tiny little island of ours??? Be more realistic and less idealistic!

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  • 74. At 1:57pm on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    Was this also mentioned in the immigration figures?

    http://www.scottishdailyexpress.co.uk/posts/view/195757/224-000-immigrants-win-right-to-stay-in-Britain

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  • 75. At 2:12pm on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    Not sure if I'm allowed to post this...

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/telegraph-view/7966657/Immigration-is-more-than-an-economic-issue.html

    Never thought I'd agree with Tebbit, but read horatioharbinger at yesterday 11.25pm he just about sums up where we are going.

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  • 76. At 5:03pm on 27 Aug 2010, Stevem65 wrote:

    "75. At 2:12pm on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:
    Not sure if I'm allowed to post this...

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/telegraph-view/7966657/Immigration-is-more-than-an-economic-issue.html

    Never thought I'd agree with Tebbit, but read horatioharbinger at yesterday 11.25pm he just about sums up where we are going.

    I've read horatioharbinger ecolizzy - it's alarmist nonsense. the guy's a complete nutter!

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  • 77. At 7:33pm on 27 Aug 2010, Sutta wrote:

    Having just studied with students who dont show up for class, sometimes for a whole month and suffered doing group work with them having to do the majority of it because they were too busy holding down their jobs as income to support their living expenses, I am grieved to see such high figures. English discussion surrounding topics in the classroom is reduced to playschool level as students use their limited vocabulary in 10 word responses which are barely understandle. Humour is reduced to a handful of jousts against the English as we are the only culture in the classroom who is able to take a joke which makes for a stale working environment. Standard of english grammar is overlooked by lecturers marking papers offering the same high marks as english speakers because they ticked the boxes, rather than stretched insights or challenged norms. University education standards are falling, as they have fallen into the trap of being slave to money. We are now officially educating the world while English speakers who have had high quality education in their youth have to lower standards and embrace mediocre quality university life and for the pleasure, incur debts to take into the real world.

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  • 78. At 8:22pm on 27 Aug 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    .
    .
    PLEASE RE-POST stezza1000 @ #51.
    .
    We all assume that his posting has been removed for a BAD reason.
    .
    The quality of his content and the power of his argument was unbelievably good, leading me to advise Mark accordingly (@ #52).
    .
    .

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  • 79. At 10:56pm on 27 Aug 2010, PlanetEnglish wrote:

    The issues that seem to filter through :
    1. Migration needs to be capped as we dont have space : This problem was created in the 1990s when Labor opened the floodgates for EU migration. So, if the cause was german (or polish) measles, why apply the remedy for malaria ?
    2. Migration appears to be the problem : all the evidence of the last 300 years is that migration from villages to cities and from cities to capitals, and to australia/canada/america was the largest economic motor the world ever seen in history. So, am confused why migration - a fundamental human need - is being objected to.
    3.London perhaps had a population of 1 million 100 years ago, now it is 10 million - why is that bad economically ? New York had a population perhaps 100,000 in 1810, now 200 years later it is 10 million - why is it bad economically ? The same is true for Tokyo, Delhi, Hong Kong and many more World Growth Centers.
    4. We need to incubate more such World Growth Centers, rather than try and prevent their emergence. I really do not understand why the fuss w=over migration that drives economies of countries, capitals et al ?
    5. As for color of migrants, the less said the better - the Great in Britain was not a result of the color that we now want to associate with, every child here knows that. India stood by us at every stage as we became Great over the last 300 years; our problems then and now was the EU - as France proved in 1814, as Germany proved in 1945. So, am just nonplussed - how can we deny these fundamental facts, and be content with charging 'foreign' students from India 700 % more than 'own' students from EU.
    6. Having consigned India to the colonial dustheap, it is indeed amusing when Cameron & Osborne suddenly dash off to India for sanctuary - after Obama/USA berates them over the BP Gulf spill, and the French refuse to garner EU support for BP in its tussles with the USA.

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  • 80. At 11:29pm on 27 Aug 2010, ecolizzy wrote:

    A question Planetenglish, as europeans why don't we want to associate with other europeans? We are all interbred here, with vikings and normans and saxons and romans and spanish and portugese and so I don't see why we mustn't like them. Oh we've always fought with each other, hasn't india with it's near neighbours?

    A stat guide for you http://www.londononline.co.uk/factfile/historical/ London had six and half million in 1899 and exploded to 8 and half million in 1939, and is now down to around seven and half million, but that's not counting the one and a half million illegal immigrants there. So your around 10 million might be right.

    There's more to life than just economic growth, how about we all live a much simpler life? I'm sure we'd be happier!

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  • 81. At 04:58am on 28 Aug 2010, BenLincs wrote:

    Wow! One could understand from comments above, the pain and frustration some feel as a result of unsustainable influx of migrants to the UK, over a short period of time.

    A huge proportion of the migration catastrophe could be heaped on the British Govt, for continuing with the issuance of certain categories of visas at their foreign missions without attempting to balance the flux( emigration & Immigration) and, foreigners who choose to ridicule the British border system.

    With a view to elucidating on key issues, one could deride the british border system for its open door policy to migrants who are bent on not returning to their home countries. Pamphlets and/or leaflets been given to visa applicants at various ever-busy centres, portrays a kingdom which pays, as long as you are willing to sweat. Who wouldn't want such a life? Owing to the fact that the British pounds is one of the strongest currencies around.

    Should we start on free healthcare to foreigners at the taxpayers expense? Or Asylum to people who flew economy class, thousands of miles to Heathrow? The entire system is a complete shambles.

    Foreign students do have their benefits, but to the detriment of the locals.... It's not worth it.

    I have lived in the UK for 3yrs now, finished an undergraduate degree prog June 2010 and, I hope to complete my Postgraduate by the end of the academic year. I've never at any point attended an NHS clinic since my arrival, not taken paid employment and do pay indirect tax at all times.

    I am a Nigerian, a proud one at that. Only here for qualitative eduation.

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  • 82. At 07:36am on 28 Aug 2010, Political_Incorrect wrote:

    From elsewhere on the BBC website

    "Net migration to UK rose in 2009, statistics show

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11094468

    1 Of those granted settlement in the UK in 2009, 68% were dependants of those already living in the country
    2 Migrants from the Indian sub-continent made up to largest proportion of settlement grants, 34%.
    3 Of the remainder 25% were from Africa and 21% from elsewhere in Asia"

    Something doesn't add up here. I seem to remember being told in your previous blogs and given the impression in many BBC news reports that Eastern European immigration was overwhlmingly the largest contributor to the immigration figures. As such any cap would be ineffective. Now this doesn't look like the case. Of course no admission of being wrong from the BBC. No headlines 'Cap will be effective'.

    Typical bias! All done in violation of the promise your own charter to be impartial and of course using other people's licence fee money.

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  • 83. At 3:53pm on 28 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    I love Shaunie's comments, I think she is having us all on! Does a great job stimulating the discussion! I also liked the post 57 among others.

    I may not have the latest stats but at any moment we have 120 million migrants globally. They are looking for another place to live and work for a variety of reasons. Some of them are born and bred Brits.

    I know personally a family from Manchester who emigrated to Australia a few years ago. Two "lowly" nurses with three kids went to Perth for much better incomes,cheaper housing and undoubtedly higher quality of life in a country wealthier than the UK. Shaunie and others probably don't see anything wrong with this? How many more Brits who don't really have that much to offer go along a similar path?

    Australia, according to projections, will have a 50% increase in population by 2050 - from current 21 million to 30. Some may think that means nothing given the sheer landmass of 7 million sq kms. But in reality big Australian cities feel the squeeze already. Poor planning and policies, reactive and not proactive government, and the culture where everyone has to have a free standing house with a backyard and a garden are to be blamed as the experts pinpoint. Or possibly immigration...

    If immigration is so awful for the host countries, why don't the governments stop it? There is a splendid example: Japan. Just over 1 million foreigners allowed in, the population has started shrinking (at last) from the peak 127million on 4 islands slightly larger than the UK (and covered in 75% by forested mountains). Some of the less attractive cities in the cold north have already become ghost towns, more to come. Young Japanese evade paying in to the compulsory state pension system because they do their figures and realise they will never get their money back.

    My two points here: 1. there are alternatives in real life to the open doors policies of the Anglo-saxon countries - just investigate them. 2. The argument that the UK is a overfilled boat is just rubbish. (Look at Taiwan - size of Switzerland with over 20 million people. A thriving lovely and wealthy island, again covered mostly by mountains and forests).

    I am surprised that no one from the international education industry has spoken out in this forum so far.

    For the time being - I think that some students come here for the sheer quality of education (look at the world rankings - many British universities rank along the best American or Australian and much better than any French (free of tuition for everyone!), Italian, German or whatever universities in Europe. Another point would be that the education is provided in English and for many of these kids a degree plus a reasonable command of English is a key to lucrative employment back home (why so many Brits go to work in Hong Kong, Shanghai or Tokyo?). And as any other system, you will have some who want to use it for their own benefit. So you will have an Indian kid whose family will sell their land to send him to the UK or Australia etc. for him to get a qualification that will allow him to get the PR and start a better life. Not just in terms of earnings, also more liberal lifestyle, and so forth. He will do his homework and will find the most cost-effective way to achieve this goal. Is he to blame? I think rather that the poor policies and poor supervision of the industry, i.e. government is to blame here. Mind you I suspect that the government actually counts on these monnies too, you can call me cynical.

    As for work meant for Brits taken away by foreigners... Do you really think that the "bin men" take those jobs because they are not qualified to do anything else and that these jobs provide such amazing incomes for them? I think that they just can't get any other jobs, due to variety of reasons including blatant yet very hard to prove discrimination. They just take what they can. And they use most of that income to pay their way in the UK, as they are not eligible for handouts from the government.

    I am originally from Poland, in London for it's classical music life (third biggest market after NY and Tokyo) and character. I left my highly qualified job in Australia that paid 35K pounds a year. In several job interviews I felt that I was not required to prove my ability to do the job (of which I have proven track record) but to demonstrate that I am a middle class Englishman. Well I am not middle class, I am not English, ergo I don't get the equivalent job, even though my middle class English competitors have hardly any of my skills and international experience.

    My point: I think you can assume good informal protection mechanisms within respectable institutions that will prevent foreigners from taking the worthy jobs, so they will probably join the bin army lol.

    OK, you can wake up now! Have a great weekend!

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  • 84. At 4:30pm on 28 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    83. At 3:53pm on 28 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    Sorry ... but you write a load of nonsense

    Why don't Polish employers try and employ more Brits? Or is there a 'problem' in Poland?

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  • 85. At 4:51pm on 28 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    i'm not sure love, haven't been back for 15 years. my guess is that part of the polish problem may be the famous language abilities of British sojourners... what do you think?

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  • 86. At 5:43pm on 28 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    85. At 4:51pm on 28 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    i'm not sure love, haven't been back for 15 years. my guess is that part of the polish problem may be the famous language abilities of British sojourners... what do you think?

    .................................

    Most/many British people are at a significant disadvantage to foreigners in terms of their language skills and especially in terms of 'reciprocal job opportunities/offers' ... Do you think that this is adequate or an acceptable reason for our British students and workers to be significantly worse off in their own country, as a result?

    BTW - What do you think that you mean by the term 'sojourners'?

    I don't see or hear the Polish govt or indeed any Polish employers trying to attract any British workers to emigrate to Poland ... perhaps 'they' just accept some of the stereotype descriptions of British people and this gives them an excuse not to even try? How convenient!

    Perhaps you can tell us what the Polish people generally, really think of British people?

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  • 87. At 6:21pm on 28 Aug 2010, Lenispal wrote:

    Easy to attract overseas students: give teaching posts to underqualified overseas lecturers and promote them to higher offices ahead of UK academics, encourage them to behave like third world authoritarian managers, pay large settlements to UK academics who complain of unfair treatment, ensure that these settlements are linked to silence agreements, set up centres to attract Saudi finance, and con the rest of the country that this is all in the name of multiculturalism. Should any UK students complain then ensure their meetings are attended by the UAF.

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  • 88. At 6:25pm on 28 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    Last post here ... I promise

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1373870/Arrogant-Britain-is-split-by-class-claim-foreigners.html

    Isn't it time that some sort of a 'study' was made of the foreigners' attitude(s) towards British people ... perhaps the increasingly more vulnerable British students and British workers, whether they are employed or unemployed?

    For what it is worth, I have observed that many if not most if not indeed all 'foreigners' tend to accept and circulate and convey inaccurate observations and descriptions of Britain's most vulnerable sections of 'society' (and with varying degrees of negativity) and use these as an excuse to take their education, jobs, housing benefits etc away from them.

    My view is not intended as a 'slur' on foreigners ... it is really just an observaton on human nature in terms of competition, greed and opportunism.

    Perhaps that we should realise that many if not all of the 'foreigners' in the UK are equally if not more prone to complaining and having reservations about 'foreigners' in their own country ... than anything anyone is allowed to write on here, by the BBC.

    Please ... Let's have some 'balance' BBC!

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  • 89. At 7:09pm on 28 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    I could not presume what Poles think about Brits, or be a spokesperson for them. I would encourage you to visit, say, Krakow and see for yourself. You will probably attract a lot of friendly interest if you try to communicate with the locals.

    Poland had it's peak in the 16th century, when foreigners flocked in to get a share of the wealth, advanced hygiene standards and enlightened laws. Many cities are full of public buildings and churches built by Italians and others, churches full of grave stones with English, Scottish, Italian, German and other names. Names of citizens who made a significant contribution.

    I remember that in the 1990ies there was an influx of young Brits and others to Poland seeking professional and executive positions, as there was a shortage of modern qualified work force. So many of the young Brits got positions and salaries that they could not dream of landing back home. Now the bonanza is over, the locals have caught up.

    Anyway I am not aware of any program of the British government ENCOURAGING Poles to come here, are you?

    And speaking about the language disadvantage... Well if it exists, then who is to blame, if anyone? I learnt 8 languages out of curiosity, English was the last of them. Maybe Brits should stop resting on the laurels of speaking the cousin of the language of international business and actually show more intellectual curiosity? They don't know how much they are missing! Guys, time to start learning Chinese!

    You speak about British workers and students being "significantly worse off in their own country". None of this has been convincingly proven so far. If you ask me, you can stop immigration, but then you will realise that the problems are inherent to the way the country is run, rather than immigrants taking away the resources from the locals. This is especially valid with international students. Without their money there will be fewer places and much worse facilities for British kids, or possibly closures. Or increased government funding, but that's not gonna happen, because the government believes that the universities can and should generate income from international education.

    Since we are talking about the international education, I encourage you to check the stats again. You will see that more and more British (US and Australian or even NZ) unis open off-shore campuses to scoop the money from the 400 million wealthy and education hungry Chinese, similar amount of Indians, and so on. These kids won't spend their money here, won't buy apartments and other goods here, or loose their money in the British casinos! More jobs for British residents or less?

    Xenophobia vulgaris is a natural ailment, but you can overcome it. You will sleep better and your digestion will improve. Good luck!


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  • 90. At 7:45pm on 28 Aug 2010, degrim wrote:

    Some of Shauny Babies sounds like he a raving liberal fundamentalist or perhaps on a student visa himself (perhaps at one of those suspect colleges). Without wanting to get personal I think Shauny needs to learn to address the issue at hand which is exponential population growth in the UK mainly concentrated in London and the South East and the impacts this will have not just politically but also socially and environmentally rather than looking at just the alleged economic benefits to the wider economy. There is not infinite space in the UK as you well know and therefore we can not have infinite migrration - hence the need for a cap.

    My understanding is that Malta has the largest population density in Europe and not the Netherlands so it might be worth checking that again and secondly on current forecasts Enagland is set to usurp both these countries in the next few years (I believe 20)

    The guilt we should feel about our past is a pathetic excuse and illogical explanation to allow mass immigration in to the UK. Historically you could name countless periods in time and endless countries that have plundered and pillaged as you put it but with the wrongs committed there were many positives that came out of the British Empire. The UK has now moved on and many of those nation states who obtained their independance signed up to the commonwealth.

    The UK has been a member of the EU for getting on 30 years and its political and economic committments have shifted in this direction. It has signed up to the underlying priciples of free movement of people and as a result has limited if any control over EU nationals entering the UK. To this end Britain can not continue to have a 'open door policy' to non EU citizens as well it is just not sustainable.

    Please also note that mass immigration whether you like it or not can be destructive to the host nations identity diluting it and in places displacing it completely. A countries values and norms should not be pushed in to extinction and we should not be made to feel guilty or prejudice for wanting to retain an identity that truly English, Welsh or whatever Would this be tolerated in other states? I see many areas in the UK where it is completely unrecognisable from an English town or city. Have you ever been to Whitechapel for instance?? This is not a positive sign of immigration as it shows little if any attempt at integration and would in any other language be classed as a ghetto with a largely Bengali population with very high unemployment. I do not see net benefits to the UK here. Immigration can be enriching when sensibly managed. There is always the risk of mass immigration leading to serious antipathy and worse. The UK citizens should not be forced to accept what was Labours quest to increase the arrival of migrants in the form of social engineering for their own benefits - very serious accusation indeed and one in which they wriggled out of with ease due to little media interigation.

    Going back to the main point of this discussion in relation to students. Having seen the horrendous abuse of this area of immigration I can speak with a little authority. I would be more than happy to allow university students from overseas so long as UK nationals were given sufficient places as surely this has to be balanced in favour of UK citizens. I appreciate that UK universities need foreign non EU nationals who pay the much higher fees but we have to give priority to our own citizens.

    I would like to state agaian it is the 'dodgy colleges that have been allowed to flourish with well orchestrated mainly foreign owners who have been through the system themselves and generally of the same nationality as their students. These students are studying sub-standard courses and I hate to reitterate again are the majority of foreign students that come to the UK. The pathetic claim that the UK has become a beacon for international students rivalling the USA is misleading and damn right fictitious. The USA just does not allow anyone to set up a private college as they do in the UK and have much tougher rules which govern the type of course and institution that overseas students are allowed to study at.

    Another statistic the BBC needs to look in to but wont I am sure is how many people weer granted indefinite leave to remain in the past 2 years under the legacy programme. This is the backlog of illegal overstayers that absconded. This is different to the 14 years illegal overstayers who qualify for settlement in the UK if they can evade detection for all those years. These people get settlement as a reward as confirmed by Nick Clegg in the tv debate pre election. The Legacy programme should be looked at by the BBC to get a truer picture of how many illegal overstayers have been granted and to establish wheteher this was a secret amnesty that has gone unnoticed. If not an amnesty how many of these people were refused and returned home. This is the nitty gritty stuff that BBC should look at rather than allowing the likes of the Daily Mail and the Telegraph to deliver a less than balanced perspective. Maybe they have to just to act as political make weight with the BBc so far left of centre.

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  • 91. At 7:51pm on 28 Aug 2010, degrim wrote:

    Oh does anyone know the figures for these:avid watcher of UK Border Force and would love to know some true and accurate figures pertaining to many of the situations encountered on the programme.

    how many failed asylum seekers are returned back to there own country?

    How may failed asylum seekers are granted exceptional leave to remain allowing them to stay in the UK because there is uncertainty about returning them although they have been refused asylum?

    How many people have been cleared through the clearance programme in the past couple of years (the clearing of the backlog of overstayers - less than 14 years I believe and not classed as an amnesty?

    How foreign (non EU) students as a percentage of total overseas non EU students are studying at a recognised UK university?

    Can the BBC find this type of information out which might be more significent.

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  • 92. At 9:24pm on 28 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    89. At 7:09pm on 28 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    'You speak about British workers and students being "significantly worse off in their own country". None of this has been convincingly proven so far.'
    ..................................

    You really are significantly out of touch with your comments:

    Over 100,000 British students to be denied a Univesity/college place this year with massive numbers of foreign students.
    5 million + on UK housing lists with rent inflation/ rising rents and becoming unaffordable due to 'students crushes' in some areas
    5 million immigrants to the UK during the last 13(?) years?
    5 million UK unemployed in real, sensible figures ( not just fiddled for the BBC)
    8 million economically inactive in the UK
    Approx 12 million 'immigrants' now in the UK - about 1 in 5 of the UK population.

    Accurate numbers are very hard to establish and the BBC makes little or attempt to verify its own biased reporting on this.

    We know that the British educationalists own 'imports' and 'exports' are ambivalent but they are just the greedy internationalised element and far removed and remote from most ordinary British people.

    International comparisons on absolute numbers are meaningless - it is the %'s and proportions that matter and overall staistics of the various countries. The US is 5-6 time larger than the UK on population alone and can take in more foreign students very easily when one considers that whole towns are becoming empty in the US as there is no one to live there.

    To be blunt, I don't expect to have an unbiased or successful discussion with you because of your attitude towards British people which you have already revealed with some of your comments.

    'Xenophobia vulgaris is a natural ailment which you infer afflicts only certain British people' ... I think I would venture to also applying it to at least one country in Eastern Europe and much wider and beyond.

    Do you really expect anyone to believe that if 'x' million British workers with high level Polish spoken and written language ability would now 'reciprocally invade' Poland looking for work that they would receive the same tranquil reception that e.g. Poles received in the UK over the last few years ... that they would be received with zero 'Xenophobia vulgaris'?

    I don't blame anyone for British people now being at a massive global disadvantage in terms of deficiencies in their general language skills ... but I do take issue with those who refuse to accept the problem as leaving millions of British people with a massive issue for the economic survival of themsleves and their families and as exploited by greedy foreign opportunists using all means at their disposal to deliberately exploit the weaknesses in the UK immigration and education and other system ... and seeming to become quite arrogant and defiant about it in the process as most/many immigrants are simply greedy opportunists in my book, profiteering on the misfortunes of ordinary British people.

    I think that you are massively inaccurate with your comments about the British education/employment system which I think needs urgent review and reform in order to get British citizens into British jobs and thereby massively reduce the 'demand' (from greedy UK employers) for more 'desperate' foreign labour, exploiting currency exchange rate differentials to undercut British labour wage rates.

    I do take grieveous offence at foreigners making slurs about British workers when those foreign workers would do exactly the same as many British unemployed workers, if in their position, they were required to evaluate giving up UK government benefits for a marginal wage improvement with a low paid job as under constant threat from redundancy and therefore 'high risk'.

    The point being that there obviously are weaknesses with British systems and skill levels ... you seem to be saying that it is correct for foreign immigrants to exploit this to merrily and actively exploit this to the full/large scale and to the very real detriment of millions of British students and workers ... what I am saying is I think that it is just WRONG and an INJUSTICE whatever the reasons for this outrage occurring.

    You could at least say that the overall UK immigrant numbers are too high - even if you actually sound like you might well enjoy putting a British worker out of work with your own UK employment.


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  • 93. At 10:33pm on 28 Aug 2010, degrim wrote:

    I apologise to Shaunie Babies in my last post. Those criticisms should not have been aimed at you. It was the response to your own post which made refereence to you - sorry about the confusion

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  • 94. At 11:07pm on 28 Aug 2010, degrim wrote:

    The issues most people have are not with skilled workers such as doctors mainly from India and scientists from China and even nurses -predominantly from the Phillipines and Africa SO LONG AS THERE IS A CAP REFLECTING DEMAND FOR THESE JOBS, but with those so called Highly Skilled migrants under the new points based system who are clearly not all highly skilled and can exploit loop holes in the system to score enough points - often through spurious forms of self employment.

    Then there is a category that allows international students who graduate in any discipline a period of 2 years work in the UK and who can then switch in to other employment categories in the future so long as they scorethe points necessary. The coalition government has recently raised the bar on the points needed as before it was deemed to easy. Compare ours to the Australian model if you have time and see which one is tougher. The 2 year work visa used to be only for graduates with a science and engineering background but is now open to anyone who graduates at a recognised institution. This means UK students going head to head with international students for graduate jobs right now - very challenging in the current economic climate.

    The old system of science and engineering graduates being allowed to work in the UK beyond their studies made sense as there was and is a shortage in this area or employment - now it could be a degree in business or tourism or psychology so it begs the question - why change it? There is also no limit on the number of years somebody can come and study in the UK and they can apply to stay here forever after 10 years.

    I believe the government have finally sought to tighten up the student category restricting employment for courses below degree and restricting dependants employment also below degree level which is a definite step in the right direction but perhaps need to remove the 10 year long residencey category to discourage dishounarble bogus students.

    Until article 8 of the Europe an convention of Human Rights is addressed I fear we will never fully have control over immigration policy in the UK. So many people are allowedto remain in the UK due to this article which states ones right to a family life in the UK. Basically have a child and it appear that it is very difficult to be removed from the UK

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  • 95. At 7:31pm on 29 Aug 2010, gohomeme wrote:


    As an international student who has gained an undergraduate degree and is currently working towards a PhD both at top UK universities, the changes in immigration policy affect me directly and I read with alarm that the coalition government is considering lowering the cap on immigration via the number of visas approved.

    Many of the comments I've read here have made me angry and sad at the bigotry and ignorance of many of posters.

    I had no intention of staying in the UK at the end of my studies when I first arrived.

    However, plans change. I am now engaged to an Englishman who is actually, white and middle-class and quite against moving to my home country because this is his home. He likes it here and doesn't like the climate, food and culture etc. etc. in my home country.

    So because I'm nice and the UK is actually not too bad a place to stay in, what choice do I have but to seek the government’s permission to marry him and think about settling here, AGAINST my preference because simply put, that is what he prefers. I could just not marry him but that's just foolish to give up The One because of living preference.

    I was going to apply to stay with a tier 1 work visa as I envisaged persuading him to migrate in a year or two but with the way UK immigration policy is going and the money involved (from £550 - £800 depending on your method of application but with no refund should it be rejected and no idea how long the visa would be given for), it might be easier if I just applied for the "family leading to settlement" visa route at a cost of £567 right from the outset.

    I would be counted amongst the immigration figures but I doubt that my partner and I'd "breed rapidly" (to paraphrase a comment made by another poster) and contribute to overcrowding. That I may take up a job that well-educated, hardworking British people need... well, given that the UK purportedly boasts a meritocratic system, that would just mean that I was more qualified than the competition, wouldn't it?

    With regards to paying taxes and such like, yes, as an international student, I don't pay any taxes including council tax at the moment. However in the same regard, neither does a home student. Home students don't have to prove they have the funds to support themselves over the course of their studies in the form of bank statements before they even begin their course.

    Lots of businesses here earn a lot of money from foreigners be they tourists or students. For international students, quite often we have to pay a premium for the same product, university fees included.

    Many banks now only offer international students an international student bank account that CHARGES the customer a monthly fee for what essentially should be a free service. The customer is usually required to keep a certain amount in the account (>£500) or face further penalties.

    Another example would be in the cost of visas. Those who have partners from abroad know it is definitely a costly affair with lots of hoops to jump through.

    Yet another example would be in finding private accommodation. Foreigners usually have poor credit ratings (it's the norm apparently) so renting a place usually involves 6 months' rent up front. How many British people can afford that?

    The socialist philosophy of the NHS is really great and I have visited my GP a few times in the last 6 years. But in all honesty, the system is in need of an overhaul.

    Treating immigrants doesn't single handedly contribute to the losses suffered by the NHS. Organisation of the NHS contributes to 60% of its costs (NHS website) - it is the absurd levels of management (I'm talking about the various trusts and also the IT infrastructure project) that costs more than treating patients, regardless of where they're from.

    I know it's not that fair that as an international student studying here, neither me nor my parents (who are not in the UK by the way) have not contributed a penny in tax towards the NHS but can still use the service. But taking that idea and extending it further, it is akin to saying that a person paying 40% tax should then enjoy a much better service and treatment than someone who only pays 20% or nothing at all.

    The government has many issues that need to be cleared up. While immigration is clearly a point that needs to be addressed, immigrants who are here legally are certainly penalized in some respects. Please don't blame immigrants for everything.

    Perhaps some self-reflection on British society would help address the issues that some people seem to wholeheartedly blame immigrants for.

    P.S. I do pay the licence fee too so I don't quite understand the umbrage directed at the BBC... They do make and broadcast TV programmes which cost a lot more than the cost of writing this post (Top Gear, Dr Who etc.). I suspect your licence fee is there, rather than here.

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  • 96. At 8:22pm on 29 Aug 2010, DesktopCynic wrote:

    I'd like to see the student numbers broken down by suject area of study.
    I strongly suspect that if it wasn't for the overseas students, many courses of study now on offer to ALL students (Brit and foreign) would not exist. There are simply not enough 'native' British students willing (and able?) to study the hard stuff, like mechanical engineering, physics, maths and chemical engineering, and such courses are kept going by the foreign students willing (and able?) to study this type of degree, while too many of the British young people want to study psychology and 'media' - whatever that is. The presence of foreign students keeps the courses going for ALL students.
    Of course this means that eventually Britain will not graduate enough 'native' engineers (although I guess we will have a lot of psychologists?) so obviously if we are to keep any semblance of an industrial base, we will need to offer all those smart 'foreigners' a job, before they escape back to their own countries and help them out-perform and out-engineer us.
    I actually live in the USA, (ex pat...spouse offered job here back in the booming 90s)and that's exactly what I see happening here.
    Too few American students want to study science and too many want to study 'Liberal Arts', so once they have graduated, most overseas students with a decent science or engineering degree have no problem staying on if they want to, and finding a job here. At the small science consultancy I work for, fully 25% of the staff are foreign born, Chinese, European and S. American.
    Accepting lots of foreign students, and not just the brilliant ones, allows many universities and colleges, and not just the top tier ones, to offer a wide range of course including all the sciences and a big range of languages. That means UK students have more choice too. Without the foreign students we might get a situation where only a few top schools like Oxbridge types could offer all the subjects and many other lesser schools would simply close down, restricting choice for our own students.
    And by the way, what IS the UK going to do with all those psychology majors?

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  • 97. At 11:04pm on 29 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    1. Nautonier, you are a fairly skilled manipulator - but I think the readers can see through your methods. They will also notice that I was aiming at you and you only when I made my facetious if not loving remark about your personal ailment.
    2. They will also know that Poland is and has always been a Central European state. (except for the 45 year period resulting from the Allies' deal with Stalin, called cold war).
    3. The statistics you quote are out of context, used by you in a fraudulent way, thus not worth further discussion.
    4. I am not your enemy in this discussion. In the end, your enemy is yourself and your countrymen. You elect the governments of this country who in turn create and implement the laws and policies that have lead to the current state of affairs that you are so unhappy with.
    5. I guess everyone in this forum has a more or less hidden agenda and an impartial examination of the issues is next to impossible.
    6. This is my last post and I am going to keep my promise! How about you?

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  • 98. At 09:19am on 30 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    97. At 11:04pm on 29 Aug 2010, paracoon wrote:

    1. Nautonier, you are a fairly skilled manipulator - but I think the readers can see through your methods. They will also notice that I was aiming at you and you only when I made my facetious if not loving remark about your personal ailment.
    2. They will also know that Poland is and has always been a Central European state. (except for the 45 year period resulting from the Allies' deal with Stalin, called cold war).
    3. The statistics you quote are out of context, used by you in a fraudulent way, thus not worth further discussion.
    4. I am not your enemy in this discussion. In the end, your enemy is yourself and your countrymen. You elect the governments of this country who in turn create and implement the laws and policies that have lead to the current state of affairs that you are so unhappy with.
    5. I guess everyone in this forum has a more or less hidden agenda and an impartial examination of the issues is next to impossible.
    6. This is my last post and I am going to keep my promise! How about you?

    .............................

    This is not my last post in the discussion - I'll keep posting until the vicious nasty Guardian newspaper/BBC pro libertarian mass UK immigration conspiracy against the well being and living standards of ordinary English/British people and their traditions and history, is beaten.

    My agenda is not a secret ... it is the welfare of British/English people, students. adults the elderly being first in every queue for education, jobs, public resources and public benefits and services in their own country ... if after that, there is nothing left for foreigners ... tough ... please go home and don't pretend that British poeple are any different to peoples in any other country as that is racist.

    Enough is enough too many immigrants in the UK ... too much poisonous propoganda from the BBC ... time for 'cuts' at the BBC ... and hopefully the Coalition government will remove Vince Cable for his recent comments on immigration.

    All of the millions and millions of immigrants think that they are a 'special case' ... all English/ British people are, I believe, a special case in their own country ... I'll keep posting while anyone sends direct misinformation to me and whilever the BBC keeps posting it vile propaganda and misinformation.

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  • 99. At 10:10am on 30 Aug 2010, kit wrote:

    The figures of the student visas has been increased because the government has more stricted rulds for any other kind of visas. So student visa is the only way to get the viss easily. I have worked in the exploited catering sectors for years as I have no choice and found that the employers just want to get the student to work for long hours but pay less and much less that minimum wage. At the moment the students get only £20 for working 11am - 3pm and get £25 for working 5pm-11.30pm. This is the hell for them but they have got no choice. They are not the genuine student but coming here for working. Lots of student attend the class only half session (9am-10.30am) and left for work.

    The government should close this loophole the make the employer to exploit these students (they are working full time with no break in between). This also affect the pople who settle here in way of finding the job as the employers have got to pay more than hiring the students. For example I have work for 68 house a week but get only £300. This is a bit more if hiring the student but this is still much less than the national minimum wages. So I have to get help from the local council for the housing benefit, etc.

    the goverment should not turn the blind eyes for this and force these employers to follow the laws so the pople who are working in this sector will get the suitable life and not rely on the benefit from the government.

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  • 100. At 11:23am on 30 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    Dear Mr Easton

    This is a direct challenge to the seriously inaccurate 'misinformation' posted in your figure of '£8bn annual economic benefit':

    See

    http://www.migrationwatchuk.org/briefingPapers

    and see 'What is the problem' (May 2010 - pdf document).

    To quote from the Migration Watch Briefing Paper:-

    "Clearly some migrants bring economic benefit to the UK but, taken as a whole, what they add to production is counter balanced by their addition to the population. The only major inquiry ever conducted in the UK was carried out by the Economic Affairs Committee of the House of Lords in 2007/08. In April 2008 they reported that "We have found no evidence for the argument, made by the government, business and many others, that net immigration - immigration minus emigration - generates significant economic benefits for the existing UK population." As regards the contribution of migrants to the Exchequer, they concluded that "The overall fiscal impact of immigration is likely to be small, though this masks significant variations across different immigrant groups." See http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld200708/ldselect/ldeconaf/82/8202.htm

    ............................

    Do you really know better than the House of Lords, Mr Easton?

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  • 101. At 12:38pm on 30 Aug 2010, polly_gone wrote:

    #100 nautonier

    Wow, your bile is certainly running high. Just two points on what you write/quote.

    1. The original article by Mr Easton, of whom I am no great supporting voice, is about student visas, and the acknowledged financial benefits they may bring in tuition fees and living expenses. As they are not entitled to work here (unless from the EU) then we may assume that, unless the law is being broken or our government is underselling the visa, they bring a positive financial benefit to the UK.

    2. The Lords 'found no evidence for the argument' meaning the evidence wasn't discovered not that it isn't there. They further made a careful mitigation which you quote 'The overall fiscal impact is likely to be small, though this masks significant variations...'

    In other words no one is very sure what the impact is - financially. But we do know there is always a risk of scapegoats being found for failure when the going is tough, as it has been for a great number of ordinary UK citizens for a long time. We know this because, historically, it has always been the case. I do not like the BBC's trendy chattering classes slant anymore than any other sane and intelligent person but there are ways and means of attacking it which do not involve venomous garbage.

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  • 102. At 12:52pm on 30 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    101. At 12:38pm on 30 Aug 2010, polly_gone wrote:

    #100 nautonier

    Wow, your bile is certainly running high. Just two points on what you write/quote.

    .....................

    Thou own bile be nigh the greater!

    This is what Mr Easton has written:

    "Foreign students are worth an estimated £8bn to the UK and the fees they pay for their courses underpin the finances of the higher education sector."
    ....................................

    Not only that ... but Mr Easton is also inferring that this is an annual 'benefit' (I think that it's more like a 'steal-a-fit' and not any kind of 'benefit' ... to the unidentified interests).

    Perhaps you are still having problems with your English and reading up and getting at least some of your facts right would certainly help ... but that would also probably be less 'entertaining'.

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  • 103. At 1:25pm on 30 Aug 2010, polly_gone wrote:

    #102 nautonier

    It is worrying when the pot calls the kettle black.

    The Lords and Mr Easton are talking about two completely different things.

    Do you know what the word 'comprehension' means? It does have four syllables but that is no excuse.

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  • 104. At 1:53pm on 30 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 105. At 2:44pm on 30 Aug 2010, nautonier wrote:

    103. At 1:25pm on 30 Aug 2010, polly_gone wrote:

    #102 nautonier

    It is worrying when the pot calls the kettle black.

    The Lords and Mr Easton are talking about two completely different things.

    Do you know what the word 'comprehension' means? It does have four syllables but that is no excuse.

    ..........................

    Moderators now... but you are wrong again as the Lords and Mr Easton are talking about exactly the same thing ... the overall effect(s)/numbers of immigration; although their respective statements and analyses are both defficient.

    Most/all UK student immigrants work and or seek work during or after their alleged courses of 'study'.

    Mr Easton's analysis and reference to £8 billion in annual benefits is both vague and extremely misleading when the BBC has an important responisbility to report these matters accurately and impartially and this latest 'immigration figure gaffe' is a repeat offence from the various editors at the BBC and I believe it is in breach of the BBC Charter, is is politicised and poor journalism and is unprofessional.

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  • 106. At 3:00pm on 30 Aug 2010, Zoeyoung wrote:

    Hi, as an Asian overseas student myself, it’s very interesting to see these comments. I have studied in another European country for an undergraduate science degree, and I am coming to UK for a Master degree in science.
    I have spent some of the most amazing time abroad, I love experiencing new culture, meeting new people and communicating with new language. I treasure the time I spend with my classmates/lecturers/local friends abroad, some of them are from different countries, too. I have good relationship with them, they have been very kind and supportive to me, I did pay a heavy tuition fee (but I see it as an investment on education for my future development).
    It’s not easy to be an international student, homesick, culture/language barriers and living on my own are some of the difficulties I had overcome. I studied very hard to keep up with the local students, I did have a part-time job, but I only worked very few hours, because the course kept me very busy, I didn’t have time to work more hours.
    I enjoyed the science course I took, I learned both theoretical and practical knowledge that are useful. Now I am coming to UK which has good reputation in higher education, especially in science disciplines, it produces some of the top scientists in the world. I am really looking forward to study in the UK, to get some good training in science, to exchange ideas with the people who share same interests with me, and to embrace the diverse British culture and art.
    Some of my Asian friends who were also international students have got descent jobs in home country now, the overseas experiences boost their careers, especially, their English language ability and understanding of western culture. I realize some of the international students have wrong intentions, but most of us are educated and genuine people, we just want to see the world, to open our mind, to get new ideas, to discover the difference between east and west, to pursuit the desire for knowledge. I think we are living in a global village right now, we need more collaborations than competitions, especially for young people.
    For Love and Peace, Cheers!

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  • 107. At 3:12pm on 30 Aug 2010, Zoeyoung wrote:

    Oops, I made a spelling mistake, I mean " decent job" in the last paragraph, not "descent.

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  • 108. At 08:28am on 31 Aug 2010, Calum McKay wrote:

    Scotland's population 5.0 M - Land Area 30 000 Sq miles

    England's population 50 M - Land Area 50 000 Sq miles

    You do the maths!

    Scotland is under populated, thus Mark Easton's analysis is completely inappropriate for Scotland. Unfortunately Mark falls into using the London / Southern English Centric vision, ingrained in the bbc and perpetuated by same of the countries and nations of these islands.

    Scotland has vast areas of uninhabited land due to the Highland Clearances. By any other name "Ethnic Cleansing" carried out of 150 years from 1746 to 1890s, with blessing of the british government and at times, gun boat support from westminster.

    Sheep replaced communities and shooting estates replaced sheep, people were forcibly evicted from their homes at the end of a red coat's gun barrel or their homes torched, livestock shot, etc. It wasn’t only people from distant lands who were butchered in the name of empire.

    Scotland's economy has been misgoverned from a city out with our borders, i.e. London and politicians whom are not accountable to the people of Scotland.

    Part of this mis-governance is land ownership, which up until 1997 had been overseen by a cabal in the unelected house of lords. These people effectively maintained their shooting estates to detriment of local people wishing to use land for more productive and collective uses.

    It is british government policy over generations to keep Scotland lowly populated and drained of spirit. our brightest and best have left our shores for US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and other countries through out the world.

    Scotland needs to have control over its immigration and equally Scotland needs to have control over its economy and natural resources to enable Scotland to do what is right for it, not what is right for its neighbour.

    Without Scotland having control over its own immigration, economy and natural resources, our people continue to be fed the rubbish regurgitated by Mark Easton of the bbc and the daily mail that we are over populated. Where as in truth, it is the very opposite and the main reason for our depopulated state is the discredited union of the uk.

    C McK

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  • 109. At 2:26pm on 31 Aug 2010, vivienne wrote:

    Stop your generalisation. I came to this country from outside the EU to receive the so-called English higher education. My family have so far paid 130,000 British Pounds into this country for my tuition fee and living costs for the 3 year undergraduate and 1 year postgraduate. I had 2 hours lectures a week and lots of holidays and teachers on strike. Do you really think I'm gonna stay here and become an illegal immigrant to harm your economy? I loved Britain so much as a guest and I want to still say good things about it wherever I travel to next. But it's becoming difficult.

    The first thing you do to solve your overloaded immigrants problem, is not to cap the figures allowed for overseas student visa, but to tell all your universities not to send their PR teams to China and India lying to students and parents how it is likely to stay in the UK after their degree and how worthwhile the education is the British universities provide. And also, stop your dole culture.

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  • 110. At 00:52am on 01 Sep 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    "It is british government policy over generations to keep Scotland lowly populated and drained of spirit. our brightest and best have left our shores for US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and other countries through out the world. " (Calum McKay @ 108).
    .
    Calum,
    .
    If only we could get the immigrants to go to Scotland !!!
    .
    It would be so, so good to take the pressure off London, Birmingham, Bradford, Leicester, etc.
    Unfortunately Scotland comes way down the list of places people want to migrate to. It is too cold, too dour, too lacking in employment.
    .
    I guess the Highland Clearances were a bit like the US Range Wars, where the sod-busters were pushed aside to allow the cattle barons to run their herds. The Scots certainly improved the breeding stock in countries to which they migrated, voluntarily or otherwise; after so many years of 'strictly celtic', how about investing in some new genes and pressing the EU and world community for them?


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  • 111. At 05:32am on 02 Sep 2010, Richard wrote:

    I currently live overseas with my wife in Russia. My wife is a native of this country. I took a decision to leave the UK and emmigrate and work here as an english teacher because of the racist immigration policy of the UK. Between us, me and my wife do not earn enough money to attain a tourist or visitors visa to visit my parents in the UK.

    In my work i meet people every day whose dream it is to visit the UK for a holiday, most of these people are entertaining the idea of a student visa because it is the easiest visa to get. These people are looking at genuine schools and universitys for their short trip to the UK to study. These people will study complete their course and do some sightseeing and return home. I sometimes ask them do you think you would like to stay there? The usual answer is no why? whats so good about england? Why should i be treated as a second class citizen because im from another country id rather stay at home.

    The system does need to change and it is changing as we speak. But for the whole of immigration what is needed is a registration scheme so we know where the people are who is overstaying and where to find them its not hard to start the same system applies here the gov. knows exactly where to find me and they can come and get me if they want.

    The crazy tourist visa rules are stopping honest people from visiting the UK and spending money thats simple so honest people are doing something dishonest to fufill their dream.

    As for me and my wife i will not live in the UK again and will never pay tax there again, any country that wants to keep us apart because she is from another country will never get my money

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  • 112. At 12:26pm on 02 Sep 2010, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    108. At 08:28am on 31 Aug 2010, Calum McKay wrote:
    Scotland's population 5.0 M - Land Area 30 000 Sq miles
    England's population 50 M - Land Area 50 000 Sq miles
    You do the maths!
    --------------------
    That's more like 7000 square miles once you exclude areas of Scotland that can only be inhabited by sheep, birds and fish.
    And why would the Scots wish to see its culture and employment destroyed by importing millions of people who are less Scottish than Idi Amin ?

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  • 113. At 2:27pm on 02 Sep 2010, Calum McKay wrote:

    # 112

    Why would immigration be bad for Scotland, an under populated country?

    Some of the best custodians of Scottish culture and environment, are in fact, err English or non Scots. Incomers, welcome incomers, fine new Scottish citizens, who take interest in their surroundings and seek to conserve it.

    I'd say these folk should be welcomed and encouraged to come to Scotland.

    Employment, what's your equation? Scotland has X amount of immigrants and Y amount of unemployed, both figures are the same, if only these immigrants would go home we'd be in a land of milk and honey! Aye right!

    In the modern world, labour is mobile. I come from a part of Scotland where 90% of the people I was in school with have migrated, we can not do one thing ourselves and expect differently from others.

    My main concern is that Scotland can not make its own laws on population and economy, we are governed by another country whose laws are not appropriate for Scotland.

    I’d welcome people who want to make something of themselves and the country they choose to live, be they English, Mexican or Korean. But, we Scots need the fundamental right to choose and not have others choose for us!

    C McK

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  • 114. At 4:10pm on 02 Sep 2010, daengkirana wrote:

    I did my Master's degree in Wales 7-odd years ago. At that time I had a great time, had new experiences living in a different culture and met interesting people. I also enjoyed the course and in fact my lecturers have pointedly commented to native British on the fact that a non-native speaker speaks and writes better English than they do, so I feel it is reflective of something - I don't know what exactly - that so many native posters here feel that foreign students necessarily have mediocre English.

    Anyway, I returned to my country afterwards, got a job with a multinational, doing quite well. Completely unrelated to my degree course in the UK, or my multinational job, but purely through the modern phenomenon of global communications (the internet) I met and have married an (white, working class) Englishman (not under UK law purely for logistical reasons).

    We are not planning on settling in the UK partly because of the expense, partly because of the modern-day UK culture (vs the earlier generations) in the context of suitability to raise a family in, and partly because it is becoming clear that the UK's government and people apparently would rather exile its own citizens who choose to marry foreigners than allow them to settle their family in their native country (I echo Richard in Russia's sentiments). So my husband will eventually leave his native land (as soon as he can) and live in mine (because while we are also painfully bureaucratic, the bureaucracy is not related to a dislike of bi-national families containing non-white races - it's just related to inefficiency). Meanwhile just extricating himself from his mortgage and job is a logistical endeavour in itself. And he might never be able to return, ever.

    It would be nice if people without dishonest intentions who just want completely common sense things such as to settle down with a family in the same geographical location of either of our native lands, could be recognised differently from other types of immigrants causing possible concern. For the simple reason that some of us don't particularly want to stay in your country, but somebody has to give up their native land in a bi-national marriage, so that a family can settle in one place. And in some cases (not mine) the spouse who has to give in is not the British one. I realise there are many other similar UK-foreign couples with the foreign spouse being from my country who *want* to settle in the UK, but personally I think they're insane. Maybe if one is from a desperately impoverished country, it is different. But without that desperation, you gotta be insane (no offense).

    Every country has this debate, and I don't see anything particularly wrong with the immigration debate, as long as it's not secretly racist - for example, different feelings would be felt if the race of the immigrant group is changed, other things being the same. In fact, being the native race in my own country, I have always sympathised with the view of the native race of other countries in terms of immigration and culture/language preservation. It's when it goes off the rails and turns completely xenophobic and paranoid that, you know, alarm bells should start to ring.

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  • 115. At 04:39am on 16 Nov 2010, stezza1000 wrote:

    Ecolizzy, Pat Berks, GeoffWard - thanks for your comments in relation to my posts. I unfortunately had to ask the BBC to remove them, as we were all warned in work about adverse consequences if we made such comments public on blogs etc & I was concerned for my job (which I have now left). This is despite the fact that none of this information is restricted & is freely available under the Freedom of Information Act.

    At the time I asked for the posts to be removed, I offered to be anonymously interviewed by Mark Easton but the offer was never accepted. It's a shame. There is so much the public really don't know about the realities of immigration in Britain & it's disappointing that journalists like Mark Easton clearly have no desire to find out the real facts.

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  • 116. At 12:12pm on 02 Jun 2011, U14890913 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

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