Resolution Foundation

Under new management

How immigration policy change will, and won’t, affect the UK’s path to becoming a high-wage, high-productivity economy

Immigration has been billed as both a driver of, and a cure for, a low-wage, low-productivity economy. With big economic changes like Brexit, the recovery from Covid-19 and the transition to net zero emissions coming down the track in the 2020s, this note looks at recent changes in the UK’s immigration system in order to understand how they will – and won’t – help the UK to navigate towards a high-wage, high-productivity economy by 2030.

Although migration has had substantial effects on the UK economy over recent decades, claims that the move to a new immigration system (which occurred after the UK left the European Union’s Single Market and customs union in 2021) will drive the UK towards a new high-wage economic strategy are overdone. In order to do so, the country will need a clear economic strategy, not just a migration strategy.  

Explore the report

Explore the report’s Executive Summary and Key Findings below, or download the full report as a PDF.


For all research queries about this report, please contact Kathleen Henehan. For press queries, please contact the Resolution Foundation press office.

Kathleen Henehan
Senior Research and Policy Analyst,
Resolution Foundation
Email Kathleen