In the Commons Neil O’Brien is responding to a Labour urgent question about the procurement PPE during the pandemic.
The Labour deputy leader, Angela Rayner asked the question. The Guardian article stating that documents show that Michelle Mone , a Conservative peer, and her children received PS29m secretly from a PPE company that was awarded large government contracts.
Sir Lindsay Hoyle is the Commons Speaker. He stated that MPs cannot criticize a member of House of Lords, unless they are discussing a motion specifically about that peer. He also said that MPs shouldn’t say anything that could prejudice legal action.
O’Brien didn’t mention Mone in his opening speech, but he did highlight how the government needed to quickly procure PPE equipment. While there are lessons to be learned from the high prices, he stressed that “we cannot forget the enormous national efforts made to protect the most vulnerable.”
Madeleine Sumption is the head of the Migration Observatory from Oxford University. She wrote this blog explaining why non-EU immigration is so high. Although she believes that the post-Brexit immigration rules “is likely to be having some impact on non EU visa grants (which have gone down), there are many other factors. She said:
The unusually high number of visas granted non-EU citizens has been due to three factors. The introduction of visa routes to allow for Ukrainian refugees as well as Hong Kong British Nationals (Overseas status) holders is the largest single factor. These two routes together contributed to 45% of the 467,000 visa grants that were granted between 2019 and June 2022 (excluding visitors, short-term studies, and tourists).
Students account for 39% of the increase and work visas account for 23%. The main reason for the rise in work visa grants was the skillful workers in the health care and healthcare sectors.
This is Jay Lindop who comments on today’s statistics.
In the twelve months from June 2022, a series of global events has had an impact on international migration patterns. These events were all unprecedented. These included the removal of restrictions on the UK’s entry, which was the first period of transition from the EU. The war in Ukraine was ended. There was also the resettlement and resettlement of Afghans. All of these factors contributed to the record-breaking levels of long-term migration we have witnessed.
This rise is being driven by students and migrants from non-EU nations. More students have arrived in the UK since the removal of travel restrictions in 2021 after they had studied remotely during the coronavirus epidemic. There has been an increase in people migrating to the UK for many other reasons. People who are seeking humanitarian protections (e.g., from Ukraine) as well as family reasons can also migrate.
It is difficult to predict whether the current pattern of migration will continue given all the factors that are independent of one another.
Mark Easton is the BBC’s home affairs editor. He says that the BBC’s latest annual net migration figure was the highest ever recorded.
The Office for National Statistics released numbers showing net migration, which is the total number of people who have arrived in the UK to remain long-term, was at an estimated 504,000 for the year ended June. This is the highest recorded figure.
The ONS claims that these figures are significantly higher than previous years but that this is due in part to “unique” factors. According to the ONS:
The time leading up to June 2022 was exceptional. There were many simultaneous factors that impacted long-term migration. These included continued travel recovery following the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19), a variety of migration events, including a new immigration system after the EU transition, and ongoing support for Ukrainian nationals who require protection.
All of these factors have contributed to a relatively high level of long-term total immigration, which was estimated at 1.1 million for the year ending June 2022.
Non-EU citizens drove the 435,000 increase in total immigration over a year ago (up 379,000 to 74,000 in the YE Juni 2022); increased arrivals of international students, and people traveling from Ukraine under the visa assistance scheme were also contributing factors.
Net migration increased overall in June 2022 with 504,000 more people coming to the UK long-term than leaving. The net migration of non EU nationals was 509,000 in June 2022 compared to negative 51,000 and 45,000 respectively for EU and British citizens.
The graph below shows the figures for immigration.
Here is the graph that shows the net migration figures.
Dominic Raab is facing several new complaints from senior civil servants across multiple government departments. These are related to bullying behavior. The story is told by Geneva Abdul, my colleague.
Good morning. Good morning. The industrial editor was a job that many journalists considered to be one of the most rewarding in journalism. They covered a lot of stories and were often the first to report on the Labour party. However, after the Thatcher government’s reforms to unions and mass unemployment, union membership dropped, and the number of days lost due to strikes shrunk. Now, almost all industrial correspondents are gone. It is a shame because we desperately need them today.
Here’s a quick overview of on-strike Britain.
Here are some pictures from the CWU union’s Twitter feed.
- Mick Lynch, RMT general secretary is getting ready for a meeting to discuss how to prevent more strike action in December and January. He stated:
The government must get its act together and act as a facilitator. There has been so much disruption. Grant Shapps was just being bellicose and accusing me as a medieval baron, evil Marxist mastermind, and all that. It’s not right.
Mark Harper can come in and calm things down and say, “Let’s get to the business,” and we all get a little. Our members benefit, our members get a little, the public benefits, happy days!
Here’s the agenda for today.
9.30am: Mark Harper (transport secretary) answers questions in the Commons.
11.30am: Downing Street holds an open briefing.
11.45 : Harper will meet with Mick Lynch, the MMT general secretary.
Although I try to keep an eye on the comments below (BTL), it is difficult to see all of them. If you have a question directly, please include Andrew in the comment. I will be more likely to find it. Although I try to answer all questions, I won’t be able to reply to every question.