Brexit and Fair Movement of People. Securing Wales’ Future

Author (Corporate)
Publication Date September 2017
Content Type

Further information

On 23 June 2016 the UK voted to leave the European Union (EU), including a majority of those who voted in Wales. The Welsh Government said it accepted the result, even though it had not been the recommended result of the government.

Since then, the Welsh Government worked to protect and promote the interests of Wales during Brexit negotiations.

During 2017 it published a number of key documents outlining its position and encouraging a dialogue within Wales and elsewhere:

+ White Paper Securing Wales’ Future. Transition from the European Union to a new relationship with Europe, January 2017
+ Brexit and Devolution, June 2017
+ Brexit and Fair Movement of People, September 2017
+ Trade Policy: the issues for Wales, February 2018The Welsh Government published in September 2017 a report called Brexit and Fair Movement of People. Securing Wales’ Future.

In this paper the Welsh Government proposed a fair approach to future migration to the United Kingdom, which put the economic well-being of Wales at the heart of its approach.

It set out a position which, by linking migration to the UK more closely to employment, would both enable the UK to convince EU negotiators to agree to continued full and unfettered access to the Single Market after Brexit and ensure that Welsh employers would continue to access the skills they needed.

The managed approach to migration would enable people from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland to continue to come to the UK to work if they had a prior job offer, or to seek employment if they had a real prospect of finding a job quickly.

This approach would allow Wales and the UK to continue to benefit from inward migration, while addressing the concerns that featured prominently in the debate leading up to the Brexit referendum.

The paper also set out the need for vigorous enforcement of legislation to address peoples’ concerns over the potential for the exploitation of migrant workers to undermine wages and working conditions for all workers.

While making a forceful case for fair movement, the paper also addressed what might happen if the UK government decided to impose quantitative limits on migration from the EU. In this case, which would not be the preferred option of the Welsh Government, the Government would be minded to press for a specific quota for Wales.

In addition to the report the document also contained a number of annexes compiled by external agencies for the Welsh Government:

+ Migration Processes, Definitions and Circumstances
+ Skills and Key Sector Considerations
- Labour Market and Skills Requirements in Wales
- Migration in Key Economic Sectors, Public Services and
Higher Education
+ Immigration Policy after Brexit (PPIW / WCPP)
+ Migration and Demographic Change – the Welsh Context (Chief Economist, Welsh Government)
+ Tackling Exploitation in Low-waged Work: Labour Standards
Regulation for Wales (PPIW / WCPP)

Source Link
Related Links
WCPP: Blog, 16.02.18: Immigration Policy after Brexit and Tackling Exploitation in Low-waged Work
ESO: Find more information on Wales and the EU Referendum, 23 June 2016
ESO: In Focus: Brexit - The United Kingdom and the European Union
Wales: Government: Brexit
Wales: Government: News, 07.09.17: Brexit and Fair Movement of People

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Countries / Regions