Net immigration falls by a third. Theresa May is delivering.
By Tim Montgomerie
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Some good news this morning on an otherwise disappointing day. The Coalition's immigration policies are beginning to work. The numbers coming into Britain are the lowest for a decade and are down by a third on last year. In an email to Tory supporters Theresa May celebrated the news:
"Today's figures show that we're cutting out abuse and making our immigration system much more robust. We are putting a stop to the uncontrolled immigration we saw under the last Labour government and creating an immigration system which truly works in our national interest."
The Sun was quick to welcome the news AND to praise the Home Secretary:
"There are plenty of areas where the Coalition is failing. But immigration isn’t one of them... The Coalition has a way to go before the annual increase is down to the “tens of thousands” the Tories committed to. But the trend is at long last in the right direction. Hats off to Ms May for that."
"The government’s policy has not only worked, it has worked as was intended with minimum collateral damage. The fall in student numbers was among the colleges where the abuse is believed to have occurred, not among the universities where non EU student visa numbers last year were up 3 per cent. Work permits are up by a similar amount and business visitors increased by 100,000 to 1.7 million. It would be hard to expect a better report card on a complex area of policy."
We're three years into this Coalition and, despite the difficulties, there is good news to report. One million new private sector jobs. The deficit down by a quarter. Immigration down by a third. Crime down by 10% (Theresa May again). Hopefully the news on these and other fronts will be better still by the election.