UK campaign to ready businesses for new visa system

The UK government has launched a nationwide marketing campaign aimed at ensuring businesses are prepared for the introduction of the new, points-based immigration system at the start of 2021.

With freedom of movement from the European Union ending when the Brexit transition period expires on December 31, the Home Office said the campaign would run throughout the autumn, using a range of channels to reach employers, including radio, social media, digital and outdoor advertising.In a statement, the Home Office said the key message for businesses was that the way they hired workers from the EU was changing and that, to recruit from anywhere outside the UK, they would need to be a licensed sponsor.Minister for Future Borders and Immigration Kevin Foster said: "The new points-based system will be fairer and firmer, giving us control of our borders and treating people based on the skills they have to offer and the contribution they can make to the UK, not where they come from."We will be able to decide who comes into the country, allowing us to prioritise and invest in those people already in the UK, upskilling our current work force, whilst also attracting the best and brightest from around the world to complement the skills we already have."The Home Office said it was committed to "providing certainty and support on the system" because it was vital that employers were ready for the implementation of the new system.
"The comprehensive programme of communications will complement the hundreds of engagement events that the Home Office has conducted and will continue to do so to help employers understand the system and how to prepare," the department said.conducted and will continue to do so to help employers understand the system and how to prepare," the department said."We are working extensively to understand employers’ needs and encourage them to invest in the best home-grown talent alongside recruiting the best and brightest from abroad."Our new system has been designed with businesses in mind, treating people from every part of the world equally, welcoming them based on the skills they have to offer and how they will contribute to the UK, not where their passport comes from."According to the Home Office, the new system would be simpler for businesses to access the talent they needed because of the removal of the Resident Labour Market Test and because the skills and salary threshold has been lowered and the cap on skilled workers suspended."We are also introducing special schemes to enable more scientists, academics, investors, entrepreneurs, and health and care workers to come to the UK easily and are reviewing the recommendations of the independent Migration Advisory Committee on the shortage occupation list, so that the government can work with sectors to fill roles quickly where shortages may occur," added the statement.

Read more news and views from David Sapsted.

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