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Indians in UK earn higher than Pakistanis: report

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Indians in the UK are among the high earning immigrants unlike those from Pakistan and Bangladesh as they have high rates of employment at good wages and low rates of benefit claim, according to a latest analysis of 2014 migration data.

Migration Watch UK said today that Indians “exhibit strong economic characteristics – they have high rates of employment at good wages and low rates of benefit claim”.

This contrasts sharply with Pakistani and Bangladeshi migrants, who tend to have “lower rates of employment combined with lower wages and higher rates of benefit claim”.

“Earnings for people born in India match those for the UK- born very closely in the lower third of the income distribution but are then consistently higher.

“People born in Pakistan and Bangladesh tend to have very much lower earnings than the UK-born, with nearly 80 per cent below the UK-born median, although there are a small number of very high earners,” the report titled ‘Economic Characteristics of Migrants in the UK in 2014’ showed.

The UK population born in Pakistan and Bangladesh is a similar size to the Indian-born group, an estimated 650,000 with employment rates for women less than half those for any other group.

Migrants from Eastern Europe also have high rates of employment but they have lower wages and higher rates of benefit claim than those born in the UK.

Migrants from Africa apart from South Africa have overall employment rates and wages on par with the UK-born, but much higher rates of benefit claim.

“This analysis clearly demonstrates that sweeping claims implying that all immigration to the UK is beneficial cannot possibly be right,” Migration Watch chairman Lord Green said.

“Any sensible policy should take account of the real differences in economic characteristics between migrants from different parts of the world. If immigration policy has been intended to attract only “the brightest and the best” it has clearly failed, with a very large number of migrants earning less or claiming more than the British born.

“The clear message of this research is that immigration can be reduced substantially while permitting entry to those migrants that our economy really needs,” he said.

According to the study, the Indian-born population in the UK is a little over half the size of the population born in Western Europe, estimated at around 700,000 and has a similar age distribution. Employment rates are similar too, though slightly higher for men and slightly lower for women.