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UK Economic Slump Further Hinders Immigration for Highly Skilled Professionals

by 1st Contact | Mar 06, 2009
  • The UK Border Agency has once again announced a further clamming of immigration law, set to adversely affect young aspiring professionals wishing to spread their wings and pursue a career abroad. A new addition to the radical UK immigration regime, issued by the UK Border Agency (UKBA), has imposed a new criterion on Tier 1 Visa applications, where any highly skilled foreign national must possess a master’s degree (rather than a bachelors degree) and earn an annual salary of R 93 375 (£ 20 000) to gain permission to work in the UK. According to expert immigration firm 1st Contact, the new legislation is set to protect the interests of British nationals in the face of the economic slump.

    1st Contact affirm that, in an attempt to safeguard UK citizens from potentially losing their jobs to foreign workers, the UK are also imposing restrictions on UK based companies wishing to recruit foreign workers, according to Tier 2 Visa regulations, where the following restrictions have been implemented to date:

    1. UK employers will need to advertise job posts to UK residents through a UK job Portal, Job Centre, before they are able to consider recruiting a foreign employee outside of the EU.

    “ Just as in a growth period we needed migrants to support growth, it is right in a downturn to be more selective about the skill levels of those migrants, and to do more to put British workers first”

    2. The UK Skills shortage list will no longer be used as a tool for recruiting foreign workers, but rather as a means of upskilling British nationals to decrease the UK’s dependency on foreign skills.

    1st Contact urges all highly skilled professionals who are in the process of obtaining their Tier 1 Highly Skilled Migrant Visa, to live and work in the UK, to move extremely quickly in confirming their applications, since the new legislation governing UK Tier 1 Visas is set to come into full effect, as early as, April 2009. In addition to this it has been alleged that further restrictions to the Tier 1 Highly Skilled Migrant Visa may still take shape.

    UK Home Secretary Jacqui Smith says “ Just as in a growth period we needed migrants to support growth, it is right in a downturn to be more selective about the skill levels of those migrants, and to do more to put British workers first”.
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