From Mr Michael Edwards.
Sir, Daniel Gros and Mikkel Barslund are right (“Focus on job mobility to ease Europe’s youth unemployment crisis”, Letters, June 5) to point out that Europe’s high youth unemployment is in large measure the “product of the macroeconomic environment” but that more migration could help reduce it. What they miss, however, is the capacity constraint in the regions to which young people move to get jobs.
Londoners are afflicted by the incapacity of the housing system and policy to cope with these inflows. We end up with people living in sheds, squalid private rentals or paying very burdensome mortgages. The main beneficiaries are landlords and other property owners. It’s no way to grow the economy.
Isn’t it time that the EU grasped the nettle of the housing consequences of the free movement of people – since member states and city governments, not just in London, refuse to do so?
Michael Edwards, Senior Lecturer in the Economics of Planning, The Bartlett School, UCL, UK
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