CBI director general Richard Lambert said that when he was a member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, which sets UK interest rates, “we had no idea about the flow of immigrants into our country and what was happening to inflation as a result. Not a clue”.
The Monetary Policy Committee, he added “at the time was flying blind”.
He backed the government’s points based migration system – even though some teething troubles still needed to be ironed out.
He also suggested that the reason construction firms were bringing in labour from other EU countries – which led to industrial unrest over the summer – was more to do with the quality of the workers rather than their willingness to work for less.
“There are productivity problems which it seems to me is one reason why contractors are not hiring British workers,” he told the meeting.
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