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Report: UK immigration statistics just a guess

July 28, 2013

LONDON (AP) — A scathing report from senior British lawmakers says official migration statistics are not much better than a “best guess.”

The Public Administration Select Committee calls the statistics “not fit for purpose” in a report released Sunday.

Committee chairman Bernard Jenkin says people would be “astonished” to learn there is no attempt to count people entering or leaving the U.K., but that the government instead estimates the number of immigrants coming in based on “random interviews” at ports of entry.

He said the figures used to assess the government’s progress at reducing net migration are “little better than a best guess” and could be off by tens of thousands.

The Home Office disagrees with the report’s conclusions and says the Conservative-led government’s attempts to restrict immigration are working.

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