"Those people are coming here, they're not necessarily working or they're working in low-skilled jobs, and they're not contributing to growing our economy," says UK Interior Minister Suella Braverman.

Suella Braverman's parents both are of Indian origin and emigrated to Britain in the 1960s from Kenya and Mauritius respectively.
Suella Braverman's parents both are of Indian origin and emigrated to Britain in the 1960s from Kenya and Mauritius respectively. (Reuters Archive)

Britain has too many low-skilled migrant workers and very high numbers of international students, who often brought dependents with them, the country's new Interior Minister Suella Braverman has said in an interview with The Sun newspaper.

Braverman, who is of Indian origin herself, said new Prime Minister Liz Truss's government aimed to stick to a 2019 election pledge to lower net migration in an interview on Saturday ahead of the ruling Conservative Party's annual conference.

Finance Minister Kwasi Kwarteng said on September 23 that the government was looking to review immigration policy as part of an attempt to boost growth, following complaints from business groups that post-Brexit rules were too restrictive, especially for low-paid jobs.

However, Braverman said reducing migration was an aim shared by all of Truss's senior ministers.

"What we've got is too many low-skilled workers coming into this country," she said. "We've also got a very high number of students coming into this country and we've got a really high number of dependents."

"Those people are coming here, they're not necessarily working or they're working in low-skilled jobs, and they're not contributing to growing our economy," she added.

Braverman's parents both are of Indian origin and migrated to Britain in the 1960s from Kenya and Mauritius.

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Battling 'modern slavery'

Since January 2021, most workers must be paid at least $28,570 a year for an employer to sponsor a visa, causing problems for employers in sectors such as agriculture, hospitality and some manufacturing, where lower wages are common.

The number of EU workers has fallen, but this has been offset by an increase in the number of non-EU workers, especially from India.

Net migration to Britain totalled 239,000 in the year to June 2021, according to the most recent figures from the Office for National Statistics.

Braverman also said she wanted to restrict the ability of migrants to challenge deportation on the basis that they had been subjected to forced labour or human trafficking, known in Britain as "modern slavery".

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Source: TRTWorld and agencies