As part of the major announcement by Home Secretary Blunkett on reforms to managed migration programmes in the UK yesterday, some positive measures were also introduced.
To take advantage of the skills of genuine foreign students to contribute to the UK economy, the Home Office announced that the Science and Engineering Graduate Scheme (SEGS) created earlier this year will finally be implemented in October 2004. The SEGS category will enable foreign nationals studying maths, science and engineering at a UK institution to work in the UK for twelve months following graduation.
Furthermore, the Government also confirmed that consideration of out-of-country and in-country switching applications for the European Community Association Agreements (ECAA) will be resumed from 1 September of this year. This programme is open to nationals of Bulgaria and Romania who wish to start a business or be self-employed in the UK. In-country applications for further leave to remain and indefinite leave will recommence consideration only later in the year.