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Has Rishi Sunak abandoned Tories' target of reducing net migration to under 100,000?

Downing Street suggested yesterday that the Tories’ target for reducing net migration to tens of thousands has finally been ditched.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said 270,000 a year would be ‘the logical place to start’ when asked what threshold the Government wanted to get numbers below.

Asked if reducing it to tens of thousands was still possible, the PM’s spokesman distanced himself from the target, saying ministers weren’t going to put a ‘specific number’ on it. 

But they insisted that Mr Sunak remained ‘committed to lowering overall migration, that hasn’t changed’. It comes after net migration was this week forecast to settle at around 245,000 a year in the long-term despite Mr Sunak’s pledge to reduce overall immigration.

The Office for Budget Responsibility revised its projection for long-term net migration – the difference between people moving to the UK and those leaving – up by 40,000 from its estimate in November.

It projected that the total will hit 245,000 a year from 2026-27 onwards. This was almost double what was predicted this time last year. 

The OBR also forecast that 1.6million people will arrive in the UK over the next five years – 300,000 more than previously thought. 

Asked yesterday whether the Government was ‘comfortable’ with the 245,000 figure, the PM’s spokesman said: ‘For our part we obviously have control of our immigration system [after Brexit] and we make decisions based on what we think is best for the whole UK.’

Source of data and images: dailymail

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