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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether her Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of reforming the immigration system with a view to increasing working age populations in regions where growth in that demographic has halted or is in decline; and if she will make a statement.
There is a wide range of options as to how EU migration might work we leave the EU. We are considering these options very carefully and we will take decisions based on evidence. As part of this, on 27 July, the Government commissioned the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) to gather evidence on patterns of EU migration and the role of migration in the wider economy, ahead of our exit from the EU. We have asked the MAC to report by September 2018 and flagged that interim reports throughout the period would be helpful as we develop future immigration arrangements that work for the whole of the UK.
Immigration remains a reserved matter and we will consider the needs of the UK as a whole. Applying different immigration rules to different parts of the UK would complicate the immigration system, harming its integrity, and cause difficulties for employers who need the flexibility to deploy their staff to other parts of the UK.
The Government will be setting out initial proposals for our future immigration arrangements shortly.