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The Romanians are not coming

Bulgarians and Romanians can now come to work in Britain—but they won’t

By Jonathan Portes  

© AP PHOTO/VADIM GHIRDA The free movement of labour is one of the four freedoms of the European Union—inseparable from the free movement of capital, goods and services.

Romania and Bulgaria joined the EU in 2007, and their citizens immediately gained the right to travel and settle anywhere in the EU; however, most EU countries, including the UK, restricted access to their labour markets. In the UK, for example, Romanian and Bulgarian migrants had to apply for an “accession worker card” to be eligible for employment, and there…

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