Business Group Calls for End of Cap on Tier 2 Immigration
Business Group London First has recently published details of its response to the call for evidence launched by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) as part of its review of the Tier 2 migration route.
The MAC was commissioned in June this year by the Government to review the Tier 2 route to address concerns that the number of migrants using that route was increasing and that businesses were relying on these migrants to fill shortages. It was also asked to advise on whether new minimum salary thresholds should be set to ensure that the resident labour force is not being undercut by the Tier 2 migrants.
In its response to the MAC, London First has urged the Government to bring an end to the cap on the number of skilled migrants who can come to the UK to work and to maintain the current Tier 2 salary threshold levels.
It highlights that the number of migrants coming to the UK through the Tier 2 route are actually very low – just 52,000 in 2014. London First also argues that these migrants act as a supplement to the native workforce rather than displacing it.
London First’s response said:
“This summer the cap has directly prevented business’s recruitment of skilled migrants, as the demand for visas outstripped supply for the first time. Many firms, in the financial and professional services sector for example, were unable to secure visas for their new graduate intake, placing at risk whole UK based graduate programmes.
“Firms will relocate these programmes, which are often planned years in advance, out of the UK if access to their international graduates cannot be guaranteed. This would affect the positions of UK native graduates on these programmes.
“Narrowing the salary banding for the points based mechanism would be an improvement, albeit a marginal one, and ultimately London First would like to see the cap abolished.”
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