Theresa May 'pondering job-first system for migrants from EU'


European Union migrants will need to secure a job before they are allowed to move to Britain under proposals reportedly being considered by Theresa May.

The Prime Minister ruled out the points-based immigration policy championed by Brexit campaigners, saying on Monday it was ''not a silver bullet'' to reduce the numbers coming to the UK.

Instead, the premier is said to be looking at a system that will stop migrants heading to British shores to search for work.

Mrs May was accused of backsliding on immigration by outgoing Ukip leader Nigel Farage after she dismissed proposals for an Australian-style system that was backed by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, Brexit Secretary David Davis and International Trade Secretary Liam Fox in the EU referendum campaign.

During a visit to China, Mrs May said: ''A lot of people talk about the points-based system as always being the answer in immigration. There is no single silver bullet that is the answer in terms of dealing with immigration."

The PM said voters wanted "control" over Britain's borders and insisted there were ''various ways'' the Government could make that happen.

Mrs May is heading straight to a meeting of the Cabinet after landing back in the country following the brief trip to China for the G20 meeting of world leaders, where she sought to win support for the UK as it prepares for life outside the EU.

Mr Davis updated MPs on the progress made since the shock referendum result in June but faced claims the Government is "making it up as it goes along".

The Brexit Secretary told MPs it was "very improbable" that Britain would remain a member of the single market if it faced making concessions on border controls.

"This Government is looking at every option," he replied when asked about the UK's future in the trading bloc.

"The simple truth is, if a requirement of membership is giving up control of our borders, I think that makes it very improbable."

Mr Davis insisted there will be no attempt to "delay, frustrate or thwart" the will of the British people for the country to leave the EU.

"Naturally, people want to know what Brexit will mean," he told MPs. "Simply, it means leaving the European Union. So we will decide on our borders, our laws and the taxpayers' money.

"It means getting the best deal for Britain - one that's unique to Britain and not an off-the-shelf solution.

"This must mean controls on the numbers of people who come to Britain from Europe, but also a positive outcome for those who wish to trade in goods and services."

Mr Davis said the UK will "take the time needed to get it right" when it comes to negotiating with the EU, adding: "We will strive to build a national consensus around our approach."

He said the UK will also seek to "act in good faith" towards EU countries and his Brexit department now has more than 180 staff in London plus "expertise" from more than 120 officials in Brussels.

But opponents accused him of "waffle" and "empty platitudes" following the Commons statement.