Indians benefit most from skilled worker visas  

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In May 2021, the UK signed the Migration and Mobility Partnership with India, increasing cooperation on migration and opening access for youth mobility, reports Asian Lite News

Indians are the top nationality in the skilled worker category in Britain, accounting for over two-fifths of visas granted.

“In the last year alone, over 65,500 skilled worker visas were issued to Indian nationals,” a British High Commission spokesperson said. Indian nationals have accounted for 43 per cent of the total skilled worker visas in 2021, which is a 14 per cent increase from 2019. Experts attribute this to the point-based UK immigration system that was launched post Brexit.

In May 2021, the UK signed the Migration and Mobility Partnership with India, increasing cooperation on migration and opening access for youth mobility.

“We look forward to opening the Young Professionals Scheme in due course,” the BHC spokesperson added.

A number of legal routes are being offered to work in the UK. These include the skilled worker route, graduate route and health and care worker route.

According to the UK Home Office, the number of UK skilled worker visas issued to overseas nationals since 2020 has risen by a staggering 110 per cent. Indians and Nigerians have benefited the most from these visas.

In all, there were 239,987 work-related UK visas granted in 2021, which included visas for dependents. Out of this, 150,000 were skilled worker visas. This is 25 per cent higher than the skilled worker visas issued in 2019, before the pandemic.

Interestingly, the number of skilled workers arriving in the UK from the US declined by a quarter compared to 2019. The visas issued to people from Pakistan increased by 62 per cent when compared to 2019.

Meanwhile, the Tier 1 Investor visa route to get permanent citizenship in the UK was scrapped earlier this year, amidst charges of corruption and money laundering. Nirav Modi is said to have got his citizenship through this visa scheme and there are close to 254 Indian millionaires who got British passports due to this scheme since 2008.

Also referred to as the golden visa, the process to get one began with a commitment to invest Rs 20 crore in the UK. This permitted people to live in the UK for three years, followed by a two-year extension. A quicker way for permanent residency was investing Rs 100 crore.

This visa was primarily scrapped for Russian oligarchs, who the British alleged were involved in money laundering.

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