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Migration limits

Large-scale immigration into Britain and some other European countries is a recent phenomenon and, despite the benefits it brings, cannot continue at current rates without disturbing existing national cultures and identities. A prominent left-wing economist argues that numbers do matter

By Bob Rowthorn   February 2003

Migration is a highly contentious issue. It involves many conflicting interests and raises difficult moral and practical questions, especially for the inhabitants of rich countries such as ours. How many immigrants should Britain admit and according to what criteria should they be selected? What responsibilities do we have to those who are kept out, and to their mostly poor countries of origin? Is it right or necessary to restrict immigration in the first place? These questions are the subject of intense debate in many countries, and the debate promises to become even more intense in the future.

A government minister…

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