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Over the next 15 years more than half a million new homes will have to be built in London as the capital’s immigrant population is expected to soar by over a million. Even this massive building project is based on the assumption that one million Londoners will leave for other parts of Britain during that period.
That is the conclusion of research published today by Migrationwatch UK.
The report points out that the city’s Housing Strategy entirely misrepresents the reason for London’s population growth, claiming that it is down “primarily to the natural growth that results from London’s relatively youthful population.”
‘That is sheer nonsense,’ said Sir Andrew Green, Chairman of Migrationwatch UK, ‘London’s huge population increase in the last two decades has been driven solely by immigration and the same will apply to the next 15 years.’
Between 1991 and 2011 the UK born population in London was static at 5.2 million while the foreign born doubled to three million. This increase has put huge pressures on the capital’s housing stock. Partly as a result, the social housing waiting list has doubled, the number of households in the private renting sector has also doubled and the ratio of London house prices to earnings has more than doubled.
All this has happened despite a substantial outflow of Londoners to other parts of the UK. Between 2001 and 2011 there was a net loss of 680,000 residents from London to elsewhere in the UK.
At local authority level in London there is a clear correlation between the net inflow of international migrants and the net outflow of residents. Overall it is clear that the outflow from London as a whole has reflected changes in international migration. Clearly, the availability and cost of housing is a key factor in decisions to leave London.
Looking ahead, 1.1 million immigrants are projected to come to London in the next 15 years so London’s population will be driven by international migration and births due to the current and future immigrant population. This does not of course make any allowance for the presence of a substantial illegal migrant population in the capital.
Meanwhile the Mayor’s ambitious plans to double house building to 42,000 homes a year over the next 15 years assume that mass immigration will be offset by one million Londoners leaving the capital.
Said Sir Andrew: ‘City Hall has been less than frank about what is going on. The general public have no idea of the extent to which immigration is driving the city’s housing crisis and causing Londoners to leave.
‘The business lobby seem to have a lofty disregard for the lives of ordinary Londoners. It is ludicrous for them to suggest that London needs immigrants on anything like the present scale. The inevitable effect is massive pressure on schools and hospitals and, especially, on housing. London needs skilled migration, not mass migration.
– Migration Watch UK