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Levels of migration into Britain are a controversial issue. In the three decades prior to 1998, net migration was, on average, close to zero. Since 1998, average net migration has exceeded 150,000 per annum.

Those in favour of migration argue that migrants do jobs that natives don’t want, pay taxes, make the labour market more flexible and are good for growth. Those against argue that they limit job opportunities for natives, hold down wages, add to overcrowding and consume public services.

The economic consequences of permanent migration depend on the extent to which migrants are like natives. If they have…

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