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We remind you again that if you are in the UK on a long-term visa and looking to stay longer it is still often possible to make a same-day application at UKBA. We can help with this. Call the London office on 0344 991 9222 for further details.
Many UK employers are finding that their Tier 2 Sponsorship Licence is coming up for renewal. We can also help with this.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has backed a new, pro-immigration pressure group, the Migration Matters Trust, in defiance of his own party.
Mr Johnson is a Conservative. The UK government, which is led by Conservatives, is committed to reducing net immigration to below 100,000 and has introduced measures including
- A cap of 20,700 on the number of skilled workers who can enter the UK on Tier 2 (General) visas.
- A crackdown on educational institutions to prevent 'bogus students' from obtaining Tier 4 student visas.
- Closure of the Tier 1 (Post Study Work) visa which allowed international students to work in the UK for two years after graduation
Mr Johnson wrote letters to cabinet ministers in November saying that the closure of the Tier 1 (Post Study Work) visa stream had been damaging to UK business. He also said that it was 'crazy' for the UK to drive away international students who would go instead to universities in the US or Australia.
A contractor hired by the UK Border Agency has been writing to people with valid permission to stay in the UK and telling them to leave.
Capita, an outsourcing company, was given a contract in 2012 to contact migrants who do not have leave to remain in the UK and to tell them to leave.The UKBA gave Capita a list of 174,000 people and told Capita to contact them by text or email and tell them to leave.
Capita began contacting people late last year and feedback suggests that some names are on the list wrongly. The BBC reports that a woman with a UK passport, students with valid Tier 4 visas and various others with UK visas have been contacted.
Critics say that the scheme is pointless anyway as people who have overstayed their visas are unlikely to leave the country because they receive a text message.
A Nobel Prize winning scientist, Sir Andrei Geim, who came to the UK from Russia in the early 90s, has warned that 'stupid' immigration policies will hinder UK scientific research. Sir Andrei received his Nobel Prize in 2010 for the discovery of graphene, a form of carbon with possible industrial applications. He was working at Manchester University with a team of scientists most of whom came from Russia and China.
Sir Andrei says that, under rules introduced in 2012, none of his team would have been allowed to settle in the UK. The new rules require international workers to earn at least £31,000 a year before they can apply for indefinite leave to remain in the UK. When Sir Andrei came to the UK, he earned the equivalent of £27,000 a year.
Canada’s immigration minister, Jason Kenney, has said that he has no plans to scrap Canada’s Immigrant Investor Program. The program was closed to new applicants in June 2012 with a backlog of 25,000 cases. These could take ten years to clear. The press speculated that Mr Kenney might terminate the backlog as he had at the Federal Skilled Worker Program.
The Immigrant Investor Program enables foreign nationals who have CAN$1,600,000 in assets and invest CAN$800,000 to gain Canadian permanent resident status. Mr Kenney said that, while he had no plans to close the program, he was considering raising the minimum investment.
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