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June 25, 2019

Migrant worker pay rules to be reviewed

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P
Pa
June 25, 2019

LONDON: Salary thresholds for migrant workers are to be reviewed before the UK’s immigration system is overhauled.

On Monday, Home Secretary Sajid Javid asked the Migration Advisory Committee to review and advise on salary thresholds before the changes come into force from 2021. The news follows calls from Environment Secretary Michael Gove who last month called on Javid to bring in flexible immigration rules for skilled workers after Brexit to avoid vacancies in certain industries.

Gove criticised the £30,000 salary threshold for immigrant workers, saying measuring whether someone qualified as skilled by their salary was not appropriate for all industries when he gave evidence at Holyrood’s Rural Economy Committee last month.

The Migration Advisory Committee previously recommended existing minimum salary thresholds should be kept in the next immigration system, which includes paying experienced workers at least £30,000, and new entrants, including graduates, at least £20,800, the Home Office said.

Javid also asked the committee to consider whether there should be exceptions to the rule and if there was a case for regional salary thresholds for different parts of the UK. The Home Secretary said: “It’s vital the new immigration system continues to attract talented people to grow our economy and support business while controlling our borders.

“These proposals are the biggest change to our immigration system in a generation, so it’s right that we consider all of the evidence before finalising them. That’s why I’ve asked independent experts to review the evidence on salary thresholds. It’s crucial the new immigration system works in the best interests of the whole of the UK.”

The committee is expected to present its findings in January 2020. The new immigration system will remove the cap on the number of skilled workers and speed up work visa processing times as well as allowing anyone with the equivalent of A-levels to apply, the Home Office said.

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