27 February 2009

Indian skilled workers challenging new UK visa rules

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Indian skilled migrants are outraged about the new tougher migration rules to be introduced in April, reports The Times of India.

The new UK visa rules mean that skilled professionals looking to move to the UK through the tier 1 category need at least a master's degree or a previous job's salary of £20,000 plus, if they do not have a job already lined-up in the UK.

Indian skilled workers, spearheaded by the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP) forum, are challenging the government for making it tougher for tier 1 applicants to move to the UK.  Indians, who make up the largest group of foreign nationals in Britain (619,000 residents), feel that the new rules are too restrictive.  

While it is feared that the new UK visa rules would stop thousands of Indians moving to the UK annually and contributing to the British economy, the British Government feels that migration numbers need to be reigned in to help the economy recover from high unemployment rates during the recession.

The Government is trying to take a tough stance against immigration, with a driving policy of "British jobs for British workers".  Many people are sceptical whether the Government is succeeding with this policy, yet statistics do show that the number of short-term migrants is finally receding. 

Tim Finch, head of migration at the Institute of Public Policy Research, said the numbers of migrants who move to the UK would continue to drop while the recession hits the UK, and while the Government introduces its tough new system for immigration. 

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