Great Britain wants to restrict visa rules for international students to prevent migration from abroad. The British government announced on Tuesday that in future, only students pursuing masters or doctoral degrees will be required to bring their family members to the country for the duration of their stay.
Last year, 136,000 visas were issued to family members of international students. This is eight times more than in 2019.
No job without a degree
More tightly, in the future foreign students should be prevented from switching to an employment relationship without completing their studies, thus extending their stay. However, according to the government, students can stay in the country for two more years on the same visa if they get a job after graduation.
Speaking in parliament, Conservative Home Secretary Suella Braverman said the plans struck the “right balance” and would help migration to “pre-coronavirus levels” in the medium term. Braverman faced opposition to his plans from his Treasury and Education Department colleagues. These refer to the skills of foreign workers and the return on the high tuition fees international students have to pay at British universities.
Expected migration peak
After Brexit, the UK has stopped visa-free entry for students from the European Union (EU). Nevertheless, migration is estimated to peak this year.
This trend was supported by adaptation visas for refugees from Ukraine, Hong Kong and Afghanistan. But many students also came to the country, especially from India and Nigeria. Unrestricted immigration from the EU was a major issue for Brexiteers in 2016.
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