Frank Field MP and Nicholas Soames MP (neither members of the Cornerstone Group) wrote the following letter on behalf of the Cross Party Group on Balanced Migration:
When we founded our Cross Party Group in the autumn of 2008 our main purpose was to urge the government to reduce net immigration. We now have a Prime Minister who is committed to reducing net immigration from recent levels of about 200,000 a year to “tens of thousands” by the end of this Parliament.
We have particularly urged that the present almost automatic link between economic migration and permanent settlement should be broken so that industry and commerce can obtain the skills they need but which much less impact on the size of our population. We are glad, therefore, to note that the government now plans to issue a consultation on how this might be done.
This consultation is part of a series of measures now being rolled out by the government to achieve their aim on net migration. We enclose for your convenience a brief summary of the state of play.
It is very important that these measures be brought into effect. Otherwise our population will indeed reach 70 million in twenty years time as official projections now indicate. This would, in our view, create the most serious strains both on our public services and on the cohesion of our society.
With best wishes,
Frank Field and Nicholas Soames