ASI support for Indian immigration covered in The Times and Guardian

Sam Bowman's comments supporting further Indian immigration to the UK were covered in The Times and the Guardian.

The Times reported (twice):

Sam Bowman, executive director of the Adam Smith Institute think tank, said: “A free trade deal with India that also made it easier for skilled Indian workers to come to Britain would be win/win for us, and be a real coup by making the UK the first major economy to strike a deal with India.
“More Indian immigration, especially more skilled immigration, would be great for Britain. India’s IT sector is booming, and making it easier for British firms to hire some of that talent would be a big boost to our own technology companies.”

The Guardian reported:

Sam Bowman, executive director of the Adam Smith Institute, agreed that May ought to be more flexible on migration. “India’s position that a trade deal with Britain must include looser migration controls on Indian migrants is good news for Britain. A free trade deal with India that also made it easier for skilled Indian workers to come to Britain would be win-win for us, and be a real coup by making the UK the first major economy to strike a deal with India,” he said.
Brexit supporters told voters with links to Commonwealth countries that leaving the EU would allow an immigration system that was fairer towards people from their countries. However, if May is to meet her promise of cutting net migration to the tens of thousands, she will need to reduce migration from across the world. Bowman argued that British people were relaxed about skilled workers and students arriving in Britain, and said the cap had become an “albatross hanging around the government’s neck”.

 

 

More Indian immigration would be great for Britain says Sam Bowman

Theresa May says she would consider relaxing Britain's visa restrictions for Indian citizens, but only if the return of those living here illegally is sped up. 

Sam Bowman, Executive Director of the Adam Smith Institute, said:

"India’s position that a trade deal with Britain must include looser migration controls on Indian migrants is good news for Britain. A free trade deal with India that also made it easier for skilled Indian workers to come to Britain would be win/win for us, and be a real coup by making the UK the first major economy to strike a deal with India.

"More Indian immigration, especially more skilled immigration, would be great for Britain – India’s IT sector is booming, and making it easier for British firms to hire some of that talent would be a big boost to our own technology companies. And more flexibility about temporary work visas is essential to liberalising trade in services, where workers sometimes have to locate abroad for months to deal with a foreign client.

"The only barrier to this win/win outcome is political: the government’s crude migration cap, which does not differentiate between students and highly skilled migrants, who the public itself is relaxed about, and unskilled migrants. India is just another example of this cap making trade deals hard to negotiate: China, too, may demand freer movement in exchange for freer trade.

"The migration cap has turned into an albatross hanging around the government’s neck, and if we are to make Brexit a success it needs to be significantly reformed or, better yet, scrapped altogether."

Sam Dumitriu defends Uber relentlessly after ruling

Following the disappointing Uber ruling Head of Projects at the Adam Smith Institute, Sam Dumitriu, appeared across all the major news networks and nationals defending the gig economy giant.

Appearing on Sky Sunrise the morning of the ruling to kick things off Sam went on to appear on Sky News, BBC Breakfast and LBC.

And across major commercial stations including Heart, Magic and Xfm.

Ben Southwood, Head of Research also gave an interview to LBC on the ruling, further cementing the ASI as a lead commentator on the story.

ASI reaction to Uber ruling: This is disappointing for drivers and consumers

Sam Dumitriu, Head of Projects at the Adam Smith Institute, said:

"This is a disappointing decision for both the 40,000 Uber drivers and the hundreds of thousands of Uber users across the UK.

"Nearly 80% of Uber drivers preferred being self-employed and being their own boss, saying in a recent poll that they wouldn’t trade that in for some of the benefits of worker status like holiday pay, pension contributions and the National Minimum Wage.

"Uber drivers typically earn well above the National Living Wage. Across the UK, the average driver earns £16 an hour, that's after Uber has taken their commission, but before you factor in extra costs like insurance, petrol and car payments. One you factor that in it comes to around £12 an hour, still well above the minimum wage. It's higher for drivers in London and it's higher for drivers who work at peak times like Saturday evening.

"Consumers will see prices rise and a less stable, predictable service. And this doesn't just hit Uber. It threatens other new business models like Deliveroo and Amazon Prime Now."

For further comments or to arrange an interview, contact Flora Laven-Morris, Head of Communications, at flora@adamsmith.org | 07584 778207.

 

Benefits to Brexit? Our Sinnovation paper according to Metro

When the Metro asked what good had come from Brexit the ASI's Sinnovation paper was the highlight of the list.

The Metro reported:

That’s right, apparently now we’re leaving the EU we can binge-drink without feeling crap the next day. According to the Adam Smith Institute, after Brexit the UK will be allowed to develop synthetic alcohols, which get people tipsy but without the awful headache and shame that inevitably follows the next morning. While there wasn’t anything specifically banning the development of drinks such as Alcosynth, the EU’s complex health and safety laws made it commercially unviable.


 

Heathrow runway long overdue good news says Sam Bowman

Following the news that Heathrow's third runway has been approved Sam Bowman, Executive Director of the ASI, asks why not approve Gatwick too? He commented:

"The approval of a third runway for Heathrow, seven years after it was first mooted by the then-government, is long overdue good news. It’s a big point in this government’s favour that it has finally gone ahead with the plans, and a sign that it might be willing to push ahead with other important projects that local NIMBYs don’t like.
"We shouldn't feel too sorry for local residents, no matter how vocal they are. Their house prices will have been lower to reflect the inconvenience of living in the flight path, compared to similar houses in quieter areas and, for anyone who has bought a house in the past four decades, also to reflect the probability of a third runway being built. So the trade-off for them is cheaper housing in exchange for a bit more ambient noise from aircraft. 
"There’s no real reason that Gatwick shouldn’t also be given approval for an extra runway too, though. Britain should be as open to air passenger traffic as possible, being one of the world’s premier tourist and business travel destinations. The more runways the better. It’s also important now that the government gets the Border Force’s house in order to be able to deal with the increase in passenger numbers that the third runway will deliver, which means modernising its equipment and processes along the lines detailed in a recent Adam Smith Institute report."

For further comments or to arrange an interview, contact Flora Laven-Morris, Head of Communications, at flora@adamsmith.org | 07584 778207.

Southwood debates what should, and shouldn't, be in the Autumn Statement

Head of Research Ben Southwood was in City AM this week debating what should, and should not, be in Philip Hammond's debut Autumn Statement.

Ben argued in City AM :

"Whenever growth is moribund, you will hear a chorus calling for infrastructure spending. The problem is entrusting nearly every bit of infrastructure to the state. The tiny bits we allow the market to tinker with – especially self-driving cars – are progressing in leaps and bounds that will revolutionise nearly every aspect of our lives.
"When the economy is stagnant, the best boost is tax cuts. Governments are bad at playing the markets – firms do it better. Instead of several £50bn projects in one sector, they invest across thousands of projects, directed by guesses driven by skin in the game and the profit motive, with an automatic mechanism to wind down failures – bankruptcy.
"If the government wants to raise productivity growth, it needs to raise investment, and let the private sector decide where to put that investment. If Philip Hammond cuts taxes, especially taxes like corporation tax, capital gains and stamp duty, which penalise research and capital investment, we will all reap the rewards."

 

 

Heathrow comments covered by City AM and the Daily Express

Sam Bowman's comments on the approval of Heathrow's third runway were covered by City AM and the Daily Express.

City Am reported:

Sam Bowman, executive director of the Adam Smith Institute, said: "It’s a big point in this government’s favour that it has finally gone ahead with the plans, and a sign that it might be willing to push ahead with other important projects that local NIMBYs don’t like.
"We shouldn't feel too sorry for local residents, no matter how vocal they are. Their house prices will have been lower to reflect the inconvenience of living in the flight path, compared to similar houses in quieter areas and, for anyone who has bought a house in the past four decades, also to reflect the probability of a third runway being built. So the trade-off for them is cheaper housing in exchange for a bit more ambient noise from aircraft."

A second City AM piece reported:

Sam Bowman, executive director of the Adam Smith Institute, said "we shouldn't feel too sorry for local residents".
Bowman said: Their house prices will have been lower to reflect the inconvenience of living in the flight path, compared to similar houses in quieter areas and, for anyone who has bought a house in the past four decades, also to reflect the probability of a third runway being built. So the trade-off for them is cheaper housing in exchange for a bit more ambient noise from aircraft.

The Daily Express reported:

Sam Bowman, executive director of the free market think tank the Adam Smith Institute, said the approval of third runway was “long overdue good news”. 
He said: “Britain should be as open to air passenger traffic as possible, being one of the world’s premier tourist and business travel destinations.”

Borders after Brexit co-author appears in the Spectator

Ed West, co-author of he ASI's recent 'The Border after Brexit' paper, wrote a piece for the Spectator titled: In defence of small nation states.

The Spectator notes:

As I argued as a co-author of a recent paper for the Adam Smith Institute, there’s no reason why a frequent American visitor can’t swipe into Britain like he can swipe into the Tube. I’d go further and say there’s no reason why an American can’t freely live and work here. The social costs of free movement between rich countries are very minimal, and in future there will probably be increased competition to attract the small pool of very talented people. It is feasible we could have open borders not just with western Europe but also Japan, the US, Australia, Canada, Singapore, South Korea, New Zealand and, if and when its median income reaches a certain point, China. So there’s no reason why a world of 500 or even 1000 states would slow down the necessary free movement of skilled labour.

Green belt calculations in The Times

The Times, reporting on the 300,000 new homes to be built on the greenbelt, referenced ASI figures featured in our paper The Green Noose.

The Times reported:

"Paul Cheshire, a former government planning adviser, said that green belts benefited a small number of wealthy people and confined millions of poorer families to increasingly overcrowded cities. The Adam Smith Institute think tank calculated last year that a million homes could be built on the outskirts of London, within walking distance of a railway station, by sacrificing 3.7 per cent of the capital’s green belt."

The Times later reported in a leader story:

"The belief that the green belt is sacrosanct is one of the great shibboleths of our time. The Adam Smith Institute has calculated that a million homes could be built around London with the loss of only 3.7 per cent of its green belt."