Home secretary Sajid Javid has confirmed there will be no "automatic right" for EU citizens to work in the UK after Brexit, potentially ramping up tensions between him and Cabinet colleagues.
Speaking to the Home Affairs Committee this morning, Javid declined to comment on whether highly-skilled workers would be able to look for a job in the UK without the need for a visa or whether businesses would require a visa for each EU worker they employ.
This would be covered in the immigration white paper, due out in the autumn, after the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC)'s report is published in September, Javid said.
He told MPs: "There will be no automatic right for anyone from the EU, or anywhere else in the world, to make a unilateral decision to hop on a plane and come to work in UK."
As revealed by City A.M., Javid recently dropped this as one of two post-Brexit systems in favour of an Australian-style points-based system. However he has come up against friction from chancellor Philip Hammond and business secretary Greg Clark, who fear this will cause disruption to businesses used to employing workers from the EU.
It was thought that immigration would not be included in the Brexit white paper due out on Thursday, but Javid told committee chair Yvette Cooper that there would be "a chapter" dealing with the broadstrokes.
He reiterated the government's position that freedom of movement would come to end after Brexit, and indicated his position on the future immigration system.
"Freedom of movement as we understand it today will end, but also there will be no version of that, no derivative of that, no type of free movement, no backdoor version of free movement," Javid said. "Free movement will end."