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The High Commission in London has assured Indian medical professionals working in Britain that the Indian government will actively work with the UK Home Office and Foreign Office to try and help those affected by last years immigration rules' changes. HSMP Forum Ltd., an Indian special interest group, filed a case in the London High Court protesting the changes, claiming that medical professionals from India working in the UK have suffered due to the changes. The High Court ruled that the government did not act illegally. An appeal was filed last week.
The UK Home Office is defending numerous changes to immigration laws last year, and indicated that more changes are forthcoming. Several years ago there was a clear shortage of medical professionals in Britain. The government engaged in a drive to attract immigrants and to educate more doctors at home. Along with a free-movement labor pool from the EU, the increased graduation rate has largely filled the need. Immigration laws are regularly shifted to focus on skills needed in Britain.
Non-visa nationals in Britain with a work permit for six months or under do not require an entry clearance. Under a rules change announced this week, if they leave the UK Common Travel Area, they may now be denied re-entry at the discretion of immigration officials if they are attempting to re-enter on the basis of the work permit alone. Non-visa nationals may obtain an entry clearance at a British Embassy or Consulate and should then be allowed to re-enter the country without problems.
Sweden has accepted many more Iraqi refugees in the last year. The government is now urging the European Union to ease asylum restrictions across the bloc to address the refugee crisis. Sweden currently accepts more than half of all asylum applications from Iraqis attempting to enter Europe. Many Iraqis fled to Sweden during the 1990's as well, largely due to Sweden's generous refugee policies.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has announced plans to increase service fees by an average of 66%. The agency is required by law to support its operations with fees. The increase in fees is needed for upgrades to services, and to pay for an estimated $1 billion in debt anticipated in the coming two years. Many immigrants and their attorneys are expressing their concern that the fee increases will place a burden on immigrants.
Ten cities across the United States are launching an experimental citizenship test. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services wants 6,000 people to take the test before finalizing it as the mandatory new test sometime this year. Volunteers are not penalized for failing the experimental test; applicants may retake the old test if they do not pass the new one.
An obscure portion of the Canadian Citizenship Act of 1977 requires certain people to re-apply for citizenship by their 28th birthday or lose it. Canada's Immigration Minister announced this week that the government will fast track the citizenship of all affected individuals.
Business interests are lobbying the Canadian government for changes to the Working Holiday Visa Program. Currently, the working holiday visa allows for a one-year stay in Canada for people aged 18 to 30. Industry representatives want to extend the visa to two years and eliminate the age restriction.
A proposal has been made for the creation of a new agency to be responsible for the recognition of foreign credentials and to establish uniform practices for recognition across Canada has been put. More training and guidance programs for migrants is part of the proposal, as well as a website to detail accreditation processes.
Industry experts across New Zealand estimate that the country needs about 1,200 qualified chefs immediately. The catering, restaurant and hotel industries are cooperating with the government to develop a large-scale recruitment drive. The government is fast tracking work permits for chefs. The industry is looking for qualified chefs with a little experience up to five years experience.
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