Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP, the anti-EU party, said the United Kingdom must regain control of its borders with a “common sense” immigration policy that stops unskilled workers from coming in and welcomes people with skills.
Unskilled workers have no special training or skills.
Mr. Farage, who was in central London unveiling his party’s immigration policy, made an election pledge, saying UKIP would introduce a points-based system, similar to what is used in Australia, to stop unskilled immigrants pushing down wages and putting pressure on public services such as the NHS and schools.
According to UKIP’s leader, a new home is built in the UK every seven minutes just to cope with the country’s current influx of immigrants.
Mr. Farage says he would introduce an immigration points system.
The vast majority of the British public (77%) wants the country to regain control of its borders, Mr. Farage claimed. This is impossible, he pointed out, while the UK continues being a European Union member.
UKIP had previously (ten days ago) set a target to limit net immigration to 50,000 each year. Mr. Farage says he has now done away with imposing “arbitrary targets”, explaining that the problem is not the quantity but the quality of employees who come in from abroad.
In an interview with Sky News, however, Mr. Farage said that if UKIP won the elections and introduced an Australian-style points system, the number of immigrants would not exceed 50,000 per year.
David Cameron, who made a “no ifs … no buts …” pledge before the last elections that he would reduce net annual migration by 200,000, has failed miserably. The UK’s net migration figures in the year to September reached 280,000.
In the Australian immigration system, where total annual numbers are capped, candidates have to answer a series of questions regarding their skills – the higher their skills the more points they get.
In order to be granted a visa in Australia, you have to get at least 60 points.
EU immigration system bad for Britain, says Farage
Mr. Farage is convinced the points-system can be created to make sure the UK gets the right number of highly skilled workers from around the world.
He believes the current EU system, which discriminates against highly-skilled candidates from outside Europe, is neither ethical nor good for Britain’s requirements.
UKIP says it would give candidates who reached the minimum number of required points a five-year visa.
The party said it would impose a five-year moratorium on unskilled candidates, with no amnesty for people currently working within the UK illegally.
Australian Skilled Immigration Points Calculator
In the Australian system, you must pass the “Basic Requirements” before your application can proceed. You need to answer “Yes” to the following questions:
1. Are under 50?
2. Is your English at least “Competent Level”?
3. Do you have post-secondary education? (in a small number of occupations, substantial relevant work experience may be acceptable)
4. Is your occupation on the SOL? (Skilled Occupation List)
5. Do you have necessary work experience in your nominated occupation, or do you meet the two-year study requirement?
Earlier this week Mr. Farage said he would not make a good Prime Minister, and that his political ambitions have come at great cost to his personal life.