Home Office publishes details of five immigration advisory groups

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The Home Office published membership details of five advisory groups that have been established to strengthen engagement between government and industry as the future skills-based immigration system is developed. 

The department is undertaking a year-long engagement programme to listen to the views of communities and collect expertise from UK businesses. 

More than 100 events have been held since the beginning of the year, reaching almost 1,500 stakeholders. 

Caroline Nokes, Immigration Minister, states that the advisory groups will provide invaluable expertise and represent the views of businesses, employers and vulnerable people.

Speaking of getting the new immigration system right as a priority, Matthew Fell, CBI Chief UK Policy Director said “Employers have welcomed this opportunity to provide extra evidence to the Home Office, to help design an immigration system which both restores public confidence and meets the needs of our economy.”

The sessions are described as being frank and constructive, and it is hoped that the detailed feedback provided is reflected in the final details of the new system.

The 5 groups are:

1.    Employers’ Advisory Group – comprised of groups representing major UK employers

2.    Education Sector Advisory Group – comprised of groups representing colleges and universities

3.    Crossing the Border Advisory Group – made up of organisations representing the aviation, maritime and rail sectors

4.    National Advisory Group – comprised of groups representing organisations from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales

5.    Vulnerability Advisory Group – consisting of organisations representing vulnerable individuals

The new immigration and borders system is to be implemented in a phased manner from 2021.

Proposals include abolishing the annual cap on issued visas for skilled workers and broadening the skills threshold to include people with qualifications equivalent to A levels.

The new skills-based system will also abolish the resident labour market test for high-skilled workers and implement a route for temporary workers with any skills from low-risk countries, enabling them to stay in the UK for a maximum of 12 months.

Full details can be found in the government’s White Paper.

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