24 May 2010

UK immigration needs flexibility to lure talent

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The Lord Mayor of the City of London, Nick Anstee, has said the UK needs a flexible immigration policy for skilled migrants to ensure the future of the City as a major financial and decision-making centre.

UK skilled immigration

The City needs flexible UK immigration, the Lord Mayor of London has said.

In the Lord Mayor’s comment piece for the City AM newspaper he said it is clear that the City lies at a crossroads and what is  needed now was certainty, clarity and confidence in the business environment when it comes to reform.

The new government provided some much needed detail on this front last week by publishing its coalition agreement, he said.

“We welcome the Chancellor’s commitment to create the ‘most competitive corporate tax regime in the G20’, and one that underlines the fact that Britain is open for business. Only by continuing to attract the top institutions and individuals can we maintain our position in the international marketplace.

This is the reason why the country needs a flexible UK immigration policy for skilled migrants capable of filling gaps in the labour market. Turning away talent makes little business sense, the Lord Mayor added.

People from across the globe gravitate towards the City because of the financial and professional services cluster and foreign direct investment contributes more than a quarter to London’s economy, generating over £52bn each year.

Whilst some people view the predicted shift in the financial centre of gravity towards Asia as a threat to London’s position, the Lord Mayor said he prefers to see it as a great opportunity for closer partnership and mutual growth.

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