More than four in five jobs created since Labour came to power 10 years ago have gone to people born outside the UK, official figures have revealed.
The Statistics Commission found that just 300,000 of the 1.7 million extra jobs for people under state retirement age have gone to people born in this country.
The government previously claimed that just 800,000 of 2.7 million jobs available to all ages had gone to foreign citizens. Employment minister Caroline Flint then apologised for this and revised the 800,000 figure to 1.1 million – still less than half the total number of jobs.
By using conflicting methods of estimating employment and population levels, only counting foreign citizens as migrants, and including jobs taken by retired people, the government gave a clouded view of the picture, the Statistics Commission said this week.
In its report, the Statistics Commission, which was set up by Labour to verify official figures, said: “The 1.1 million figure is calculated using estimates made in 2003 of what the population would be in 2007.
“However, the increase in the employment level since 1997 [the 2.7 million], was calculated using population estimates made in 2005 of what the population would be in 2007.”
Critics said the new figures showed the government needed to halt Eastern European migration to the UK. The government insisted that its 1.1 million foreign nationals figure was correct and that jobs exist for British nationals.