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Foreign Workers: European Union

Volume 468: debated on Monday 26 November 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the number of jobs which were filled in the (a) Oxford and (b) Banbury travel to work area by EU migrant workers in each of the last three years. (167170)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 26 November 2007:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your parliamentary question on jobs filled by EU migrant workers in the Oxford and Banbury travel-to-work areas. (167170).

The Office for National Statistics compiles statistics on employment for local areas from the annual Labour Force Survey (LFS) and the Annual Population Survey (APS) following International Labour Organisation definitions.

The National Statistics method for estimating the number of migrant workers employed in the UK is routinely based on the number of people at a given time who were born abroad, are of working age (16 to 64 for men, 16 to 59 for women) and in employment. This question has been answered on this basis. It means, for example, that some people who are UK nationals will be included in the total of "foreign born" and that people who are working but are above state pension age are not included.

The table attached shows the numbers of working-age people in employment who were born in EU countries other than the UK and were resident in the Oxford and Banbury travel-to-work areas, for the 12 month period ending in December of each year from 2004 to 2006.

When interpreting these figures, it is important to bear in mind that the APS is not designed to cover everyone who is present in the UK. The survey may undercount the numbers of people who were born overseas. The reasons are set out in the table footnote.

The APS estimates at this detailed level are only available consistent with population estimates published in February and March 2003 and are not comparable with the statistics published in the Labour Market Statistics First Release on 14 November 2007, which are based on the latest population estimates.

Number of working-age1 people born In EU countries (other than the UK)2 who are in employment and are resident in Banbury and Oxford travel-to-work areas3


12 months ending in December

Banbury TTWA

Oxford TTWA










1 Men aged 16 to 64 and women aged 16 to 59. 2 Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Irish Republic, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia. 3 Travel-to-work areas (TTWAs) are approximations of self-contained labour markets based on commuting to work patterns. 4 Less than 500 people. Notes: 1. It should also be noted that the APS may undercount the numbers of people who were born overseas because :- the survey excludes certain people who have been resident in the UK for less than six months; it excludes students in halls who do not have a UK resident parent; it excludes people in most other types of communal establishments (e.g. hotels, boarding houses, hostels, mobile home sites, etc); it is weighted to population estimates which exclude migrants staying for less than 12 months; APS microdata are weighted to population estimates consistent with those published in spring 2003 which are significantly lower than the latest population estimates. 2. As with any sample survey, estimates from the APS are subject to a margin or uncertainty.

Source: Annual Population Survey