14th May 2015
Bank of England chief Mark Carney has rejected concerns that cheap foreign labour is hurting UK productivity according to a BBC News report.
The worry comes of the back of analyst fears that a bigger level of available workers has put firms off from investing in productivity-boosting technology.
But Carney said rising numbers of UK nationals willing to work have had a greater impact on the labour force than migrant labour.
He added however, that the UK should hold its European Union referendum “as soon as necessary” as business organisations may delay making investments while there is uncertainty over Britain’s future in the union.
Carney said: “We talk to a lot of bosses and there has been uncertainty whether it’s for the election or the referendum.”
He highlighted that older people willing to work and workers seeking more hours had added 500,000 to the labour force over the past two years, 10 times more than immigration.
Carney told the BBC’s Today programme that he would “really dampen down” the argument that foreign workers were to blame.
He said: “Now that spare capacity is being used up. For the economy to move forward, it’s going to be a story of increased productivity.
“We think that it’s going to start to pick up over the next few years.”