MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Green clarified that the government did no intend to enforce a migration cap.
"It is clear that one of the forces behind the Brexit vote was a feeling in some parts of the UK that immigration had been allowed to be too high for too long, and I think we should respect that," Green said, as quoted by the Sky News.
"We're not going to stop immigration overnight, nobody has ever suggested that, that's never been UK Government policy and it won't be UK Government policy. Immigration policy is always a balancing act between forces pushing in different directions," Green noted.
Green added that he considered "the tens of thousands" range a "sustainable level" of net migration.
In January 2010, then-Leader of the Conservative Party David Cameron, who became the prime minister later that year, said net migration should be kept in the "tens of thousands," rather than "hundreds of thousands" range. Incumbent Prime Minister Theresa May has repeatedly pledged to stick to the "100,000" target set by her predecessor.
In late June, a poll by NatCen Social Research revealed that 76 percent of Brexit supporters had been more concerned about increasing migration flow in the United Kingdom rather than about the UK general political line.
According to the latest data of Migration Watch UK, net migration to the country was 248,000 in 2016. It has been above Cameron's and May's target of 100,000 since 1998 and reached an all-time-high of 333,000 in 2015.