Companies have complained of “frustration” at having to look overseas for staff after trying to hire local workers.
Max Mosley, an economist at the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, said: “International workers are propping up the labour market in many ways. It is very challenging for employers — the kind of tools they have at their disposal, to raise wages to try to compete, does not work any more.”
Mosley told The Daily Telegraph that companies might look for foreign workers because managers found it difficult to attract British staff.
More than nine million people of working age have quit the jobs market. The number of companies registering to become sponsors to hire staff overseas has doubled in the past two years.