The capital of the UK is known for a diverse population. Indeed, its approach to “multiculturalism” differs greatly from its neighbors on the Continent. What can we learn about London’s approach to immigration?
The distinctness of London has led many to clamor for the capital to pursue its own policies, especially on immigration. The British prime minister, David Cameron, is a Conservative. So is the mayor of London, Boris Johnson. But they have diametrically opposed views on immigration.
Driven by a perceived political need to adopt a hard-line stance, Mr. Cameron’s coalition government has imposed myriad new restrictions, the aim of which is to reduce net migration to Britain to below 100,000. Driven by the real economic needs of London, on the other hand, Mr. Johnson has campaigned for looser rules. Earlier this month he called for the creation of a special “London visa” to allow talented tech experts and fashion designers from around the world to get jobs in the capital. It would be, he suggested, “a clear message to the elite of Silicon Valley or the fashionistas of Beijing that London is the place they should come to develop ideas, build new businesses and be part of an epicenter for global talent.”