The changes made by the United Kingdom government to its visa policy for the non-European Union nationals will be implemented from Thursday. The move is said to affect a large number of Indian citizens.
The UK Home Office announced the new visa rules for non-EU nationals earlier in November. The rules require people who have made their visa applications on or after November 24 under the Tier 2 intra-company transfer (ICT) category to at least 30,000 pounds (USD 37,131) in salary for a permit. Earlier salary threshold for the same category was 20,800 pounds (USD 25,723).
"The first of two phases of changes to Tier 2, announced by the government in March following a review by the Independent Migration Advisory Committee will affect applications made on or after November 24 unless stated otherwise," a statement from the UK Home Office said.
The new visa rules will impact Indian IT professionals the most as the ICT route is majorly taken by the Indian IT companies in Britain. According to the findings of the UK Migration Advisory Committee (MAC), Indian IT workers accounted for almost 90 percent of the visas which were issued under the ICT route.
The new rules also have a new English language requirement in place for family members of a foreign national in UK applying for settlement in the country after two-and-a-half years. The new rules will also apply to the parents and partners of the foreign national who are currently in the UK under family immigration rules whose due date is scheduled to expire on or after May 1, 2017.
"(Immigration) is not serving to increase the incentive to employers to train and upskill the UK workforce. Ready access to a pool of skilled IT professionals in India is an example of this. We did not see any substantive evidence of long-standing reciprocal arrangements whereby UK staff are given the opportunity to gain skills, training and experience from working in India," the MAC report said.