British jobs for British workers?

6 02 2009

As indicated below Most of the jobs created over the past ten years in the UK have been in either the public sector or the business services area, focussed around finance. At the same time, jobs in manufacturing shrank.

With the near collapse of financial services and the probability of big cuts in public spending coming down the line it is not hard to see what will happen to most of the jobs that were created in the past ten years. Big rises in unemployment amongst women workers in particular are very likely.

The recent furore around British jobs for British workers has not helped to clarify the real problems of the UK economy. In fact, one of the main stimuli to the UK economy in the past ten years has been the influx of immigrant labour,often to do jobs that UK workers would not do. Instead of resorting to job protectionism we should be looking to where the new jobs of the future can be created.

NESTA, the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts, has produced a pamphlet setting out its ideas of how to do this. While I disagree with much of what they say,which I will return to in future blogs, it is at least an attempt to look beyond the current firefighting and deserves attention for that reason alone.



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