UK Immigration discussion on Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa continues

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It has previously been reported by - that the Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa would not be re-introduced. However, the Scottish Secretary of State now says that the UK government has 'not shut the door' on the introduction of new, post-study work visas in Scotland.

Recently, David Mundell - the Conservative MP for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale & Tweeddale and the Secretary of State for Scotland – insisted that the government had 'no intention' of reviving the Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa scheme, which was scrapped in 2012. Mr Mundell recently made headlines when he publicly announced that he was gay. He is also the only Conservative MP in Scotland.

Conservative Government may consider Tier 1 PSW Options

However, it's understood that Mr Mundell has informed the Scottish Affairs Select Committee that the Conservative government is open to 'reasonable suggestions.'

Scottish Minister, Humza Yousaff, whose parents were immigrants, has been championing the re-introduction of the Tier 1 post-study work visa; he said that the UK government is 'all over the place.'

Yousaff referred to comments made recently, saying: "There is cross-sector and cross-party consensus in Scotland for the reintroduction of a post-study work visa. From universities and colleges right through to businesses and trade unions, it is widely recognised that giving the brightest minds from across the world the chance to work here after graduation will benefit Scotland economically, culturally and socially."

Tier 1 Post-Study work Visa should be reintroduced

A Post-Study Work group, set up by the Scottish government is adamant that the Tier 1 Post Study Work Visa should be reintroduced and said so back in 2015. The Smith Commission – group set up to look at more powers for Scotland in the aftermath of the independence referendum said that the UK and Scottish governments need to consider options to allow Tier 4 visa graduates to remain in Scotland after their studies end.

The Commission said: "The Scottish and UK governments should explore the possibility of introducing formal schemes to allow international higher education students graduating from Scottish further and higher education institutions to remain in Scotland."

Scotland keen to bring back the Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa

The Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa had a solid record for attracting world-class talent to Scotland and encouraging them to stay in the country. The abolition of the visa was a major blow to international students wanting to study and then work in the UK; this was a particular concern of Indian nationals.

After the Tier 1 PSW visa was scrapped British universities experienced a 50 per cent drop in the number of Indian students attending their institutions. Between 2010 and 2014, the number of new entrants into Scottish Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) from India dropped by a staggering 63 per cent. Currently, more than 2,000 Indian students are studying throughout Scotland.

The Scottish government wants to recapture the success of the Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa. The Post-Study Work steering group had written a letter to UK Immigration Minister, James Brokenshire, following Mundell's previous statement that the government had no plans to bring back the Tier 1 Post-Study Work Visa. The letter requests a response to clarify the post-study work visa issue.