Allowing This New Flood of Migrants Is Economic Lunacy
by Nigel Farage
IN LESS than two months anybody from Bulgaria or Romania who wishes to come to the UK may do so.
Many people here are talking about this but unlike most of them I have visited shanty towns in both countries and know what they are like.
In December 2006 I visited Romania with the Daily Express on the invitation of the Romanian government as the country was on the cusp of joining the EU. I stood in the mud of a street market and talked to the locals. It was clear many wanted to come to Britain.
Many already have. Then in May I went to Bulgaria. I visited Fakulteta outside Sofia, a place described as a "gypsy ghetto". I received an incredibly warm welcome. I was supposed to be the political ogre from Britain who opposed their right to move to the UK and yet, as always in Eastern Europe, the food was served, the drink flowed and we got on famously. The simple reason is that, unlike our formal diplomatic representatives, I was honest. I told them that I believed large numbers will come to the UK and they laughed and generally agreed.
Anybody who has visited these places will understand why so many people wish to come to the UK. They will understand the grinding poverty and base discrimination that people on the edges of Balkan society face, they will understand how Britain with its easy-to-access welfare system would look like a reasonable option.
Factor in, in the case of the Roma, that the Eastern European Roma have already moved to the UK from countries such as Slovakia and Hungary – having already set up family and social networks here – and the problem is amplified.
Ukip's position on the relaxing of rules for Bulgaria and Romania has always been clear. They are countries whose GDP is several factors lower than our own. We know there are job agencies setting up in both countries advertising work and others giving advice on how to access the UK benefits system.
It is in the words of immigration specialists a significant pull factor. The UK has more than 20 per cent of under-25s out of work, nearly a million of our young people, and yet through ignorance, short sightedness or mere loyalty to our membership of the EU the Government seems to care more about the lives of those in Falkuteta than they do for those in Warrington, Wigan or West Byfleet.
It is a simple fact of supply and demand. If there is an oversupply of unskilled labour wages drop. Opening our doors in January to all Bulgarians and Romanians will create an even greater oversupply than we already experience. Scarce jobs will become even harder to find and employers will have every reason to reduce wages – in part explaining why much big business is so keen on both EU membership and mass migration: it lets them keep wages low and profits high.
Alongside the genuinely hardworking and well-intended migrants who will come to Britain to seek employment will come two further groups: those who are already being trained to access our welfare system and those who wish to exploit the new open borders for criminal purposes.
Those who plan to exploit the generous benefits available in the UK will soon find ways round our system while criminals will seek ways to maximise the opportunity of being in the more affluent UK.
It is a sad but true fact that countries such as Bulgaria and Romania have not yet recovered from decades of communist rule. Those discriminated against in their own countries often have limited access to legitimate employment to make an honest living and have turned to crime in order to survive. And make no bones about it, many will bring this lifestyle to Britain with them.
The City of London police told us earlier this year that there have been more than 27,000 arrests of Romanians over the last five years out of a then total of 87,000 living here.
While these figures are horrifying in themselves worse is the fact that, due to our membership of the EU, we cannot even deport those who are convicted.
We CAN send them home, we can even pay people to go back but under EU rules all they need to do is to get on the next plane, train or coach if they wish to return. As we have seen that is exactly what they do. And who can blame them?
The Daily Express is running its new crusade to demand that David Cameron puts national interest first and blocks the change in law that will mean on January 1 all Romanians and Bulgarians will have equal rights to our system.
It must be supported in its crusade. We are deliberately, knowingly importing economic, social and cultural problems that are entirely avoidable. I call for a referendum on our membership of the EU in part because of this. The migration problem is an EU problem. Until we leave there is nothing we can do to address it.
- » Ukraine and Bulgaria Show Power of EU Model
- » South Stream Bilateral Deals Breach EU Law, Commission Says
- » One Abortion for Every Two Births in Bulgaria
- » Berlusconi May Have A Cunning Plan To Escape Prosecution In Italy: Running For Election In Bulgaria
- » Only Bulgaria Beats Britain for TV Addicts
- » Bulgaria and Romania Jobless Rise as Eurozone Unemployment Rate Dips
Replying to Beheader: As far as I know, my ancestry is German-Irish -- not Romanian. However, like many Americans who've visited Romania, I've found it an enchanting destination, more so for the gracious attitude of the people I've met than for the clothing they happen to wear. However,
friends here in the USA have told me that Bulgaria's countryside is even more spectacular than Romania's, so hopefully I will have a chance to see Bulgaria soon.
Allan Cruse, i suspect you are Romanian, your name would be Alan Cruise in correct English. This is Bulgarian forum, we don't care what you saw in Romania. If indeed you are American you must be a very impoverished individual to be hanging around in Romania. What clothes are you wearing if Romanians' made such an impression on you? Those are their only proper clothes, especially young people want to make a good impression when going out, home they are wrapped in the lousiest of clothes
What Farage means to say is that in the gipsy ghettoes he met many people who are identical to his supporters in the UK: ignorant, uneducated, and politically and morally naive. The difference is that his British supporters are also xenophobic and prejudiced, blaming their own poor performance in life on foreigners "stealing" the jobs they are too lazy to do and at wages they are too jumped-up to accept. The pity is that the UK government is now running scared and trying to appeal to the dregs of the electorate in an attempt to save their own hides. They would do better to restrict the right to vote to those who contribute properly to the national purse and who can demonstrate that they can adequately understand the issues involved rather than espousing knee-jerk crypto-fascism and swallowing rabble-rousing rhetoric from a nonentity like Farage....
East European migrants contribute $40bn to UK economy, study finds
"It is a sad but true fact that countries such as Bulgaria and Romania have not yet recovered from decades of communist rule."
Says UK, the country that bombed half of Balkans last decade, destroyed infrastructure and imposed sanctions in the region.
But I agree with you Nigel that I too don't want Bulgarians to go to your rainy mud island. Looks terrible, bad food, ugly women, and it's funny that I read that half of the people who work in your industries are foreigners, English rather live on welfare I reckon. I guess the fear is that some gypsies are going to compete with the English in their favorite past time, mooching in front of the TV n collecting welfare. I guess that's the real issue, no?
Nigel, if your most recent visit to Romania was December 2006, then I'm afraid you are hopelessly out-of-date. Things in Romania have been rapidly advancing, especially in the capital: I was in Bucharest, Timisoara, Cluj-Napoca and Constanta just a few weeks ago, and in Brasov, Sibiu and Ramnicu Valcea in summer 2012. The BBC described it as "Romania's stampede toward modernity." You say Romania is a "poor country," but most young people I saw during my frequent metro rides were wearing designer-label clothes.