Brexit did have some serious complications when it came to UK- Europe relations. Businesses were unclear how they could carry out their activities- the rules seemed unclear and there was chaos. One of the most important queries was about the requirement for EU citizens to get a U.K. visa again.
Well, not any more.
Recently, it has come to light that post-Brexit, all EU citizens might be free to visit the UK without having to go through the trouble of obtaining visas.
Sources at Whitehall have issued a confirmation that this policy is well on its way. The Post-Brexit immigration plan of the UK is being conjectured for quite some time now, and the report is expected to be published later in this year.
However, EU citizens will not have the right to stay indefinitely because of the visa-free rule. If they want to settle in the UK and work, they would have to follow the normal migration procedures.
British ministers have continuously asserted that they have no intention to stop immigration entirely. Brexit will allow them to take certain control measures but they will still hire skilled workers from the EU.
There had been conjecture that the government might use quotas so as to keep the number of skilled workers from the EU coming into the UK, in check. But sources have denied this claim and said that the new immigration system would consist of a particular number of work permits which will be issued for EU workers in particular employment sectors.
The immigration plans that will be published this year will explain in detail the government’s proposals for a long-term system. However, during the transitional period, there may be different rules in play. Even though EU citizens will not need a visa anymore to enter the UK after Brexit, this does not allow them free movement.
EU Immigrants May Get Work Visa for 2 years After Brexit
The UK government post-Brexit has announced on considering giving work visa to EU immigrants. They would
grant this work visa to EU immigrants aged below 30. They believe that younger workers can
work for longer years and hence will help enhance the contribution towards the economy of the nation.
They have asked the Migration Advisory Committee to assess the benefits of EU immigration and its economic
costs by Amber Rudd, the UK Home Secretary. This committee published the evidence report for the same consequently.
They have also been thinking of including countries like New Zealand, Australia and Canada under the same scheme as that of the EU once the open movement ends in 2019. Young immigrants between 18-30 years of age, from the above-mentioned nations, will be given 2 years work visa to help them work and live in the UK after Brexit.
The report suggests several reasons to validate the offer of work visas to young EU immigrants. As they no longer have a working life, they will be able to bring a better impact on the public financial sector. This will also probably help them integrate themselves into the UK much better.
This does not affect the 3.2 million EU immigrants in the UK after Brexit, who will be allowed to stay. But what it says is that from now on they will prioritize young immigrants by either giving out “points” in a new visa scheme or having to clear a “lower salary threshold” before being allowed to settle in the UK. The scheme would offer free movement in the UK but not a permanent settlement.
This review also includes other changes in various schemes for immigrants. Now we just have to look forward to the post-Brexit period to see if any other changes come into implementation in addition after MAC’s deliberation.
Changes in the UK student visa system
The Wooing of Narendra: Brexit, UK Leaving Europe
If and when Britain, makes the misguided decision to leave the European Union they will need to find trading partners quickly or be left out in the cold. Theresa May, who has played an important role in Brexit UK leaving Europe, ahead of her upcoming three-day trade junket to India has already spoken of a ‘global role’ and hopes to create strong trade links, but is it going to be that easy?
India has over a billion people, has a rising middle class and its economy is estimated to be worth $2 trillion which can beneficial to Brexit UK leaving Europe and the Indian PM, Narendra Modi wants to make trade easier. India is now making moves to buy from sectors such as defense, insurance, railways, and retail, all of which have large British companies ready to do business. And the Brexit UK leaving Europe itself hosts many Indian businesses such as Tata. The two countries share a language and history, even sport, and there is a sizeable Indian population already living in Britain. So what can go wrong?
India is currently mired in free trade agreements with the European Union which can hamper the Brexit UK leaving Europe, for trade-in sugar, rice, pharmaceuticals and textiles and may be unwilling to rock the boat on behalf of a much smaller market. India has also imposed a 150% tariff on imports of Scotch and Britain which can also cause a problem in Brexit UK leaving Europe since India has not exactly been welcoming over the last years of Tory rule. Visas were hiked to painful rates for South Asian students wanting to study in the UK which is harmful for trade relations since graduates were unceremoniously bundled off upon graduation.
The visa process became a lot more complicated which led to some bright Indians with places at British universities being refused visas. Xenophobia has reached an all-time after the divisive vote of Brexit and the UK is swiftly turning into the grumpy old woman of Europe, trying to turn the clock back and grumbling about the future.
If Theresa May wants to win back India then she needs to start talking about the visa, and how to retain Indian students at UK universities as well as make it easier for Indians to visit their families in the UK which has been made harder. Many countries around the world are actively trying to attract skilled migrants, such as Canada, Australia, mainland Europe, and even America, unlike the UK who seems to be openly hostile to both foreign students and immigrants.
India has one of the worlds fastest-growing economies, which will overtake in the not so distant future, so it would pay for the Tory party to start exchanging people as well as goods post-Brexit UK leaving Europe, as it is in everyone’s best interest, particularly the UK’s.
Curry Industry Lied to Over Non-EU Work Permit
The £4 billion UK curry industry claims it feels it was lied to about Brexit. The industry campaigned for the Leave campaign as they had been assured that there would be an increase in visas. Curry restaurants in the UK traditionally hire skilled curry chefs from India on Tier 2 work visas. They voted to leave the EU and get a non-eu work permit in protest at the numbers of EU citizens who were moving to work in the UK and had concerns that Asian immigrants would be sidelined. A recent survey found that the number of curry houses is in decline with 13% closures in the past 18 months, which in real terms equates to the closure of over 1,000 Indian restaurants.
At the moment curry houses that want to hire Asian chefs have to pay almost £30,000 per annum to get a non-EU work permit, and often their visa applications are turned down which leads to staff shortages, which in turn lead to restaurant closure. Working in an Indian restaurant entails long hours, at night and at the weekend with many British chefs unwilling to work in those conditions. The falling pound has also increased the price of food, which adds to the economic burden.
During the Leave debate, Tory politicians such as Priti Patel and Boris Johnson promised curry chiefs that they would be better off if they were not in the EU and get a non-EU work permit which would relax visa regulations for non-EU immigrants. They were promised a points system like that of Australia, where skilled workers from India and Bangladesh would do well due to their specialised cooking talents.
Almost as soon as the vote to leave was announced, Theresa May announced that immigration levels were to be reduced to the low thousands and the Tier 2 visa for a non-eu work permit was changed to incorporate a much higher salary than was feasible for a chef. Experts have stated that the UK government has prioritized immigration above freedom of movement for workers and that as they have stopped EU members from automatically being able to work in Britain, they cannot then backtrack and allow Asian workers to immigrate to the UK. It remains to be seen if the current India-UK trade summit will affect non-EU work permit issues for Indian workers.
British Nationals Mostly Use e-visas for Entering India
The number of foreign nationals who have entered India on e- visas has increased significantly. According to the statistics revealed by the Ministry of Tourism, there has been a difference of 73.3% between June, 2016 and July, 2017.
E-visa is an entirely online based application of visa and no intermediary agent is required for the same. This visa allows short term casual visits to India. For example tourism, family, medical treatment, etc. related purposes.
Statistics show that of all the countries eligible for applying through e-visas, the British nationals top the list with 12.9% of the total travelers. They are followed by the Americans at 12% and by people travelling from the United Arab Emirates at 7%.
The convenience of this visa application system has allowed many more travelers to visit India.
The period of stay can be extended from 30 days to 60 days on an e-visa. It also comes with double entry visa for tourism and business purposes and a triple entry visa for medical treatment.
The year alone saw 119,000 foreign nationals arriving in the country through e-visa application. There has been an increase of 68,000 travelers since July, 2016, as mentioned by indiagbnews.com. Reports show that about 5,674,000 (an increase by 15.7 %) foreign nationals visited India in the first half of 2017. This is a huge increase from the number of travelers who visited India during the same time in 2016.
Bangladesh nationals were the highest visitors to India in July, 2017. 21.9% of the tourists were from Bangladesh, 16.3% from the US and 10.9% from the UK. Reports show that about 5,674,000 of the foreign nationals.
The UK is also trying to make visa application and entry for Indian nationals easier. They are trying to bring in technology in order to hasten the visa process.
Free EU Movement should end, says Vince Cable
A staunch liberal, Sir Vince Cable has called for an immediate termination of free movement across Europe and into Britain since according to him it no longer serves any purpose as Britain is exiting the EU. He argued from an immigration point of view where certain nationalities, namely from India, US, Australia and a few others have to face tough immigration controls and meet stringent requirements, whereas those from Europe don’t have to meet any such requirement when visiting Britain.
While Cable was correct that from an immigration outlook, certain discriminatory practices seem to be at play, the fact remains that Britain would continue to trade with EU. It would always be business as usual and as such, his party, the liberal democrats would find it hard to justify terminating the “free movement” from Europe.
And one should note that it was the UK which held a referendum on whether to exit the EU or not, while the EU would have preferred the UK to remain with it. As such, given the public mood and desire, more party men may come forward to back Cable’s position.
But this would only lead to a spat between UK and EU eventually spiraling into a trade war, a situation that has no winners on either side of the pro or anti-EU bloc, with UK access to the free trade zone being revoked.
At most, given the current mood and how the “free movement” is being seen as a way to stay in EU without baggage, the UK government could initiate a set of talks with their EU counterparts and get them to cap the free movement. If they fail, they can levy a surcharge on all visitors from mainland Europe. It makes no logical sense to permit free movement from Europe into the UK when the UK has walked out of the EU.