50 Million Invited to Europe

Daily Express (London), January 3, 2009

AN EU job centre for migrants seeking work in Europe has been opened secretly in the West African state of Cape Verde.

The project is the second phase of a Brussels tax-funded plan to invite more than 50 million African workers into Britain and other members of the 27-nation EU bloc.

The advice centre, based in the island nation’s poverty-stricken capital Praia, follows a similar job centre opened in the desert African state of Mali in October.

The project is part of the EU’s controversial plan to help Africans find work legally in Europe.

The centre will provide details of job opportunities in EU states, including Britain, and provide training and support for potential migrants. It is being heralded as a “pilot scheme” by EU officials for other job centres across Africa and Eastern Europe.

But last night the timing of the scheme to invite a new wave of migrant workers to Europe was called into question as tens of thousands fear for their jobs across Britain and other EU states in the gloomy economic climate.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage asked: “What the devil are we doing opening up job centres in Africa when we have 400,000 projected to lose their jobs in the UK in the next six months?”

Matthew Elliott, of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “As people all over Britain and Europe face redundancy and unemployment as the recession bites, it is ludicrous that the EU is frittering away taxpayers’ money on such inappropriate schemes.”

The project is part of EU Commissioner Louis Michel’s master plan for the “mobility” of workers between African states and Europe.

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