Phillip Wright, chief executive at the Textile Services Association (TSA) has written to the membership to put forward their cases on migration to the Government which seeks to develop a post-Brexit immigration regime that will bring an end to free movement but will not cause economic damage or vital skills shortages.
The move follows an article in the Financial Times (26 July) in which Home Secretary Amber Rudd urged companies to put forward their cases for a Home Office-commissioned cost benefit analysis of European migration to the British economy. Examination of these cases will be conducted by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) and is expected to be published in September 2018 – just seven months before Britain is set to formally exit the EU in March 2019.
“The Home Secretary has also told businesses that there will be a transition period of up to three years after the UK leaves the European Union, whereby freedom of movement will persist. It’s also understood that there will be a cross-government programme of engagement with business and industry over the coming months on the topic,” Wright explained.
MAC chairman, Professor Alan Manning, has been asked to produce interim reports to guide Home Office officials attempting to draw up a post-Brexit immigration regime that will bring an end to free movement but will not cause economic damage or vital skills shortages. The committee will also be asked to examine:
• Which sectors are most reliant on EU labour.
• The impact of a reduction in EU migration and the ways in which both business and the Government could adjust to this change.
• Whether there is any evidence that the availability of unskilled labour has led to low UK investment in certain sectors.
• Whether there are advantages to focusing migrant labour on high-skilled jobs.
“We thought that this was worth sharing to provide some contextual information, given that we are currently in the process of assessing TSA members’ survey contributions on labour shortages post-Brexit,” said Wright, adding that there is still time to get this information in to the TSA. He added TSA will be commenting on the issue.