August 08, 2019
Britain will relax its immigration rules to make the country more open to scientists, Boris Johnson has said on Thursday.
Boris Johnson Says Hell Relax Immigration Rules For Scientists
The new fast-track visa route will be created for foreign scientists coming to the UK as part of a shake-up of immigration rules to boost the sector, the Prime Minister has announced.
“We are today announcing here on Facebook Live that we are changing the rules on immigration so as to make the UK even more open, even more welcoming to scientists from around the world,” Johnson said.
Johnson said he wanted to ensure the country’s immigration system attracted “the very best minds from around the world”.
The Home Office and the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have been instructed by the Prime Minister to work with the scientific community to develop the new visa route, which the government hopes to launch later this year.
The proposals come after the Wellcome Trust, a leading charity and medical research institute, warned the Prime Minister that a no-deal Brexit threatened the science sector.
Johnson said: “Britain has a proud history of innovation, with home-grown inventions spanning from the humble bicycle to the lightbulb.
“We were home to the world’s first national DNA database, we discovered graphene, and our cutting-edge scientists should be proud to follow in the footsteps of titans like Ada Lovelace and Nobel Laureates Francis Crick and Peter Higgs.
“But to ensure we continue to lead the way in the advancement of knowledge, we have to not only support the talent that we already have here, but also ensure our immigration system attracts the very best minds from around the world.”
The fast-track immigration route will be designed to attract researchers and specialists working in science, engineering and technology.
Options that the government said could be discussed with institutions and universities include abolishing the 2,000-per-year cap on the number of Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visas.
Other potential changes include expanding the pool of British research institutions that can endorse immigration candidates and creating criteria that confers automatic endorsement, subject to immigration checks.
The government will also look at ensuring workers’ dependants have full access to the labour market, removing the need to hold an offer of employment before arriving and providing an accelerated path to settlement.
Johnson said: “I want the UK to continue to be a global science superpower, and when we leave the EU we will support science and research and ensure that, far from losing out, the scientific community has a huge opportunity to develop and export our innovation around the world.”
The new visa proposals would complement plans for an Australian-style points-based immigration system, Downing Street said.
The government intends to provide additional funding for scientists who had sought EU funding before Brexit to ensure researchers are not disadvantaged.
If there is a no-deal Brexit, the government said it will ensure any Horizon 2020 funding applications waiting for approval will instead be automatically reviewed by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), with successful bids receiving funds.Related... Boris Johnson Refuses To Rule Out Clinging To Power If He Loses No Confidence Vote Dominic Raab Says Donald Trump Has A 'Huge Appetite' For A UK Trade Deal Post-Brexit Boris Johnson Should Publish The Civil Service's No-Deal Impact Papers
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