In an Institute of Economic Affairs report released today, The Challenge of Immigration – A Radical Solution , Nobel Prize winner, Prof. Gary Becker, argues that visas to work in the UK should be sold off. The coalition’s immigration cap scheme could be amended using this proposal to ensure that the most suitable immigrants are allowed in. Even using conservative estimates, this could raise over £600 million a year.
Using the price mechanism would allow those with the most information about their likely gains from immigration to make the decisions about how much a place working in the UK is worth to them. The people willing to pay the most to live in the UK are likely to be the same people who would contribute most to our economy. This would ensure that those immigrants allowed into Britain would most closely match the skills needed by organisations.
The coalition’s current policy of allocating working visas assumes that a bureaucratic process is capable of determining how many people of exactly what skill-set and experience will be best for the UK. It means t