Europe

Twitter Q&A: Danny Shaw answers your questions

The BBC's home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw in front of the desk and replies to questions by UGC.
Image caption The BBC's home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw answering your questions on Twitter

Immigrants from the 10 countries that joined the EU in 2004 contributed more to the UK than they took out in benefits, according to a study by University College London's Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration.

They added £4.96bn more in taxes in the years to 2011 than they took out in public services.

The BBC's home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw answered some of your questions on immigration in a live Twitter Q&A.

This is an edited version of the session:

Steve emails a question: Every job they take deprives a British worker of a job and can put them on benefits. Is this taken into account?

Danny answers: Not taken into account in this report, but Home Office study suggests a displacement effect when economy in recession.

Question from Craigie Watson in Leith, Edinburgh: What proportion of EU migrants fill low paid jobs?

Danny says: 13 million low-skilled workers in UK, of whom 2 million migrants, split 60-40 non-EEA and EEA, so just under 1 million from EU.

Mark emails a question: Can the country cope with a large influx of new residents in terms of housing, transport and social services?

Danny answers: Key question! If new migrants pay in more than they take out then yes, if it's invested in public services, but if not, No!

@DonnaHebblethwa asks a question: I have been going to hospital for 5 years. Do you think immigration is affecting the NHS?

Danny says: Many migrants work in NHS, but some communities with large migrant population report strains on services.

Julien emails: Other media refer to a £120 bn cost, what does this mean and how are they working it out?

Danny answers: This is UCL estimate of what non-EEA migrants cost the UK between 1995 and 2011.

@Scaley_Sapper asks: How many illegal people have been lost since arriving over here and what is happening to find and deport them?

Danny answers: No overall figure. It's an unknown unknown but Public Accounts Committee says Home Office has lost track of 50,000.

@danieldevereux asks: Why are people so opposed to immigration? More people and ideas can never be a bad thing.

Danny adds: I guess some people fear change, see their local area changing suddenly, others worried about jobs and services.

@ThePatAshworth asks a question: Migration roughly 50/50 EU/non-EU. Should government not concentrate on parts they *can* control?

Danny says: Coalition limited non-EU migration but EU migration can be controlled only if UK quits or gets approval for big restrictions.

Question by @jicci7: Why doesn't the UK have a stringent points system for immigration, such as applied in Australia/NZ/America?

Danny answers: Points system for non-EU introduced in UK by Labour in 2008, but none for EU cost of freedom of movement principle.

Question from @SamiaBadani: Why are we so focused on #EU migration? Now that we know it is positive will the rhetoric change?

Danny adds: People worry about jobs going, communities changing. As long as it's big political issue with UKIP rise, can't see much change.

@clooky asks: Would the @premierleague have to be a five-a-side league if there were no migrant workers?

Danny says: No. It'll be back to scrappy 0-0 draws, break your leg tackles, the long ball and hit and hope!