London raises the minimum salary to 45,000 euros to grant work visas to foreigners

Judith Mora

London, Dec 4 (EFECOM).- The British Conservative Government announced this Monday a package of measures to reduce immigration that includes raising from 26,200 to 38,700 pounds (30,530 to 45,100 euros, at today’s exchange rate) annually the minimum wage required to grant a work visa for foreigners.

The Minister of the Interior, James Cleverly, detailed the new rules before the House of Commons (lower), where he said that they are designed to “reduce abuses” of the points system, introduced in 2021 after Brexit or the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union (EU).

This system contemplates the granting of visas to students and qualified labor who meet certain requirements, with special conditions – such as a lower salary – for sectors where there are shortages, such as, currently, healthcare, nuclear scientists or engineers.

In addition to the hiring company ensuring the minimum wage imposed, candidates must speak English and in some cases pay a surcharge in advance to access the national health service (NHS).

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Conservative government is under pressure from its own MPs to cut net immigration less than a year before the next general election, after it stood at 745,000 in 2022.

On the other hand, it continues to look for a way to reduce the arrival of migrants through irregular routes -for example, in boats through the English Channel-, after in November the Justice declared illegal its plan to send potential refugees to Rwanda to have their cases processed.

The Government reported today that starting next spring it will prohibit foreign employees in critical sectors such as health or social care who earn less than the required minimum wage from bringing their dependents into the country.

Students, except for some postgraduates, will also be prevented from bringing their relatives and will automatically stay to work in the UK after completing their studies.

Only workers who earn at least Ā£38,700 per year will be able to bring their families to the United Kingdom.

The Interior will also reduce the number of sectors that, due to the urgent need for labor, are exempt from certain requirements, so that British companies offer better salaries to attract citizens of the country.

“We will prevent immigration from undermining the wages of British workers,” said Cleverly, who stressed that some exceptions will be maintained so that “we can continue to bring in workers on whom our health and social care system depends.”

The conservative politician assured that the Government “recognizes” that foreign workers “do a great job in our NHS and in the social care sector” but considered that it is “important that migrants make a sufficient contribution to the finances” of the State.

The minister maintained that this strategy will lead to “the largest reduction ever undertaken in net migration” and assured that, if it had been applied last year, it would have been reduced by about 300,000 people.

Labor Home Affairs spokesperson Yvette Cooper said, however, that the announced changes “are an admission by the Conservative Government (in power since 2010) of years of failure.”

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) said in turn that this “inflationary increase in the minimum wage and surcharges will not solve the shortages (in labor) that currently harm businesses and growth.” EFECOM

prc-jm/may

2023-12-04 21:37:56
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