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UK Announces Stricter Measures to Cut Net Migration

The British government unveiled a package of measures aimed at reducing net migration to the country, including plans to raise the minimum wage.

The British government revealed a set of measures to reduce net migration to the United Kingdom, including plans to elevate the minimum salary essential for foreign workers to qualify for a work visa.

Political Priorities and Electoral Implications:

The dominance of high legal migration levels in Britain’s political sphere has prompted the government to address this issue ahead of an anticipated upcoming election. 

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has vowed to assert more control over migration, particularly responding to criticisms from Conservative Party members.

Stringent Reforms and Time Frame:

Interior Minister James Cleverly outlined the proposed changes, highlighting the increase of the minimum salary threshold for skilled foreign workers to £38,700 ($48,900) from the current £26,200. 

Additionally, reforms to job exceptions due to shortages and stricter regulations on family reunification are part of the plan, set to be implemented next spring.

Potential Challenges and Business Concerns:

These measures may spark disagreements with business owners facing challenges in recruiting workers amid a persistently tight labor market. 

With the cessation of free movement from the European Union after Brexit, concerns over workforce availability persist.

Impact and Projections:

Cleverly emphasized the expected impact, estimating that the combined reduction in student dependents and the proposed measures could lead to around 300,000 fewer arrivals in the UK compared to the previous year’s influx of 745,000 individuals.

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