Reform Scotland


‘Unavoidable truth’ that Scotland needs more working-age people, says Reform Scotland

Reform Scotland, the independent non-party think tank, has today called for the UK Government to remove Scotland from its immigration target, as it has announced it will do for doctors and nurses coming to work in the NHS.

The think tank has today released a new paper – Taking Scotland out of the immigration target – which has highlighted that:

  • Scotland’s fertility rate is lower than every other country and region in the UK
  • Over the next 25 years the number of births minus the number of deaths is projected to be negative
  • Any increases in population will come from migration

Commenting, Reform Scotland Director Chris Deerin said:

“It is an unavoidable truth that Scotland needs immigration. Our old-age dependency rate is growing, and will grow at an even faster rate in the years ahead. We need more working-age people to pay the taxes that fund our public services and support our society.
“We need to attract people to come and live and work in Scotland. We need to attract families. And we need policies that will encourage that immigration.
“The UK Government’s decision to create an exemption for NHS workers shows that the mechanism is there to do the same for Scotland.
“This is not a constitutional issue, nor a party-political one. Creating the conditions for more immigration to Scotland does not require devolution of immigration to the Scottish Parliament – it simply requires an acknowledgement from the UK Government that Scotland has a more acute requirement than the rest of the UK.”