Friday, 11 January 2013

The Wild East Comes To Stay

From the end of 2013, Bulgarians and Romanians will be free to work across the European Union. These countries have substantial populations - about 27 million in all. Many in Britain worry these Bulgarians and Romanians will pour into the UK, while there are those in these countries who believe that either the bulk of the migration has already occurred (to Spain or Italy), others who believe that it will take the form of "circulatory" migration .... a few months away, then bring cash back home.

What they don't reckon with is the British Welfare Benefit system which hinders this process .... whereas in Italy or Spain there are effectively no welfare benefits for East European migrant, in the UK - child benefit and other benefits are offered equally. So at best we can expect many migrant with families in to arrive, claim benefits, then for families to slip quietly back to the East (while the 'worker' stills claims the welfare benefits), and at worst, they arrive, demand housing and welfare, while working in the black economy, begging or involved in criminal activities.

Beggars Banquet

In other words the UK will, via its ever giving 'horn of plenty' (by East EU standards), welfare system, interrupt the "circulatory" migration patterns of the Bulgarians and Romanians .... this means that we will end up paying for new housing in these countries via benefits and not the profits of labour e.g. Child Benefit First child £20.30 pw, and £13.44pw for the rest. So with maybe 6 children (not uncommon in the 'Roma' communities), £87.50 pw x 52 = £4550 pa (approx $6,300 pa), this where the average yearly earnings are normally about $6,800 pa .... the incentive to do this is very clear. They can live better than the average citizen simply by claiming one UK benefit - which by the way we seem to be happy to pay for children who have left the UK and returned to the East.

The Treasury says it is forced to pay for the children of any UK workers who contribute National Insurance under European Union rules (which may exclude some of the Bulgarians, with the end result that the UK tax payer is paying child benefit for more than 40,000 children abroad, mostly in Poland and the East.

The costs of this to the UK taxpayer are probably about £12 million pa (based upon 3 kids), but would be likely to double if we have a large influx of claimants from these new countries (which are poorer than the P oles were ..... All this will simply fuel more xenophobia in the UK. Of course the irony of all this is that its Britain that pushed the EU to expand Eastward in Mitteleuropa and the Balkans, against the advice of the French etc ..... now they are advising that we hold back on Turkish membership of the EU, for much the same reasons (The poverty, the illiteracy, the cultural attitudes - not withstanding the Islamic nature of Turkey), only magnified 3 fold as 74 million Turks are loosed onto Europe.

Maybe this time we will listen to the voices of caution, before the problems we will see from 2014 onwards are just the harbinger of things to come.

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