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Immigration Immigration

Ensure British businesses can recruit the brightest and best from around the world

Last updated: 12:32pm 12 July 2018

Britain is an open economy and a welcoming society and we will always ensure that our British businesses can recruit the brightest and best from around the world and Britain’s world-class universities can attract international students.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.54

Our verdict

The government has made some progress in improving the recruitment of “the brightest and best” to UK businesses. In November 2017, the Home Office announced that the annual cap on Tier 1 visas will be raised from 1,000 to 2,000 in the “digital technology, science, arts and creative sectors”. Tier 1 visas are given on the basis of “exceptional talent” to leaders or future leaders in their field. Similarly, with regard to international students, the government has long noted that it places no limits on the number of students that can come to study in the UK from overseas (see this Gov.uk page, for example). On top of this, in December 2017, the government extended a pilot scheme to encourage universities to streamline the process for international postgraduate student applications. The scheme is now being used in 27 universities across the country.

It is too early to tell how these policies have affected the country’s ability to recruit the “brightest and the best”, so this will be marked ‘in progress’ until such time. Follow this policy to get updates as soon as they happen!

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