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Posted on Apr 10, 2014 in United Kingdom |

Aggressive immigration debate harms UK soft power worldwide

  A new report by a parliamentary committee, has warned the ruling coalition that the new immigration policies are harming the country’s standing in the world. A report from the Select Committee on Soft Power says that changes to the Tier 4 student visa in particular are damaging the UK’s reputation. In addition to that the aggressive tone during the debates that surrounded immigration policy has diminished the UK soft power too. It is now necessary that the government ensures that all applicants receive good immigration service. According to the Soft Power committee, the soft power is not based on either financial or military strength, but on cultural influence and personal relationships. Therefore the British educational sector is one of the major contributors of soft power for UK. It is estimated that 18% of all students in UK come from abroad and they contribute more than 17 billion pounds to the country’s economy each year. In addition, those that study in the UK are likely to maintain ties with it in later life. Many national leaders studied in the UK including Bill Clinton of the US (Oxford), Manmohan Singh of India (Cambridge) and Benazir Bhutto of Pakistan (Oxford). In 2011, 27 serving heads of states had studied at some time in the UK. Many foreigners, who graduate from UK educational institutions go on and serve on high governmental positions in their home countries. This significantly contributes to the soft power that UK has around the globe. Therefore the coalition’s efforts to reduce the net immigration on any price are significantly damaging the country’s reputation, by discouraging international students to come to UK. There are also many international students, who enter daughter institutions that are established by UK universities abroad. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Apr 2, 2014 in United Kingdom |

UK has significantly underestimated immigration from Eastern Europe during the last decade

According to the UK office of national statistics the true extent of UK immigration during the last decade has been underestimated by more than 350 000 people. The main reason for this is a misleading data that came from International Passenger Survey. The ONS has recently completed a review of immigration from the EU particularly after 2004 when eight new nations joined the European Union. It turned out that during the years 2004 – 2008 the statistics was done by using data only from major airports such as Gatwick and Heathrow, rather than from all airports in the UK. After 2008 the data gathering was improved to incorporate all of the airports in the country. The fact that an incomplete data was used means that ONS has underestimated the net immigration number by around 35 000 people per year. The ONS now believes that net immigration was about 275,000 a year over the decade, up from the previous estimate of about 240,000 a year. The error probably will heat up the current immigration debated that is raging in the United Kingdom. It is caused by the fact that the EU elections are approaching and most of the UK electorate is opposed to the mass-immigration that comes from within EU and particularly from Eastern Europe. These attitudes have given significant political boost to right-wing anti-EU parties such as the United Kingdom Independence Party led by Nigel Farage. In 2004, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, the CzechRepublic, Slovakia, and Slovenia joined the European Union. Many opponents of immigration have raised that point that there is high probability that a lot of people from these new countries will come to UK and will flood the local labour market, which will lead to lower wages and higher unemployment among local UK citizens. Proponents of immigration on the other side have argued that it is important in order to sustain the increased economic growth.   Visa First is a leading international immigration consulting company. We can help you to apply for your UK visa, fast and hassle-free today. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Mar 14, 2014 in United Kingdom |

Immigrants in UK more likely to start their own business

Around 14% of the start-up companies in United Kingdom were founded by immigrants. According to a newly released report there are 456,073 immigrant entrepreneurs working in the UK who have founded 464,527 businesses which employ 8.3m people. The report encourages the UK government to allow creative people from all over to world to settle in UK and do business there. The report was prepared by the Centre for Entrepreneurs and DueDil, which is a company that provides information online for UK companies. The report says that immigrants are in general more likely to start business than local citizens. 17.2% of non-UK nationals have started their own business as opposed to only 10.4% of Britons. In addition to that immigrants start it at a younger age. The average age for them is 44 years, while the average age for British entrepreneurs is 52 years. At the same time however the report warned that the recent restrictive immigration policies have made UK quote hostile for entrepreneurs from abroad. The report’s authors call on all UK political parties to reaffirm their commitment to the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa and the Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa and urge them to ‘make the intellectual case to the public as to why there should be no cap on entrepreneur visas’. In addition to that, recent poll suggest that UK public opinion is less hostile towards entrepreneurs than towards immigration in general. Around 66% of the British people believed that immigration should be reduced, but a the same time 44% think that foreign entrepreneurs have made a positive contribution towards the UK economy and society. According to statistics from UK border agency, immigrants from more than 150 countries have come to UK with the intent of starting their own business. Around 50,000 have come from the Republic of Ireland. There were also large numbers from India, Germany and the USA. Visa First is a leading immigration consulting company. We can help you to apply for your UK visa, fast and hassle-free today. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Feb 21, 2014 in United Kingdom |

UK and EU battle over the right for benefits

A new proposal from the United Kingdom to limit the rights of EU immigrants to access local welfare funds has escalated into war of words with EU officials over the free movement of workers. The UK’s Work and Pensions Minister, Ian Duncan has said that from now on EU immigrants must prove that they have earned at least 150 pounds per week in order to be able to claim any benefits. Mr Duncan Smith said that EU citizens who had been in work but had not earned £150 per week for the required period would be tested to see whether they had been in ‘genuine and effective’ employment or they would be denied benefits. According to the EU definition of the term worker ß the work that he executes must be effective and genuine. The spokesman of the European Commission however said that the introduction of a minimal income threshold as a prerequisite to receive social benefits is against the European Law. The UK however insisted that a definition of worker must be someone who earns at least 150 GBP per week. The European Commission says that it has asked the UK government to send the full details of its proposals to the Commission. The spokesman said ‘The European Commission will scrutinise very closely the latest measures announced by the UK to ensure their full compliance with EU law’. This confrontation is merely one episode of the confrontation between European Union and United Kingdom on the issue of immigration battle between the both. European commission defends the right of free movement of people with EU, while UK claims that most of the newcomers actually want only to steal money from the benefit’s system of the country. Visa First is a leading international immigration consulting company. We can help you to apply for your UK visa fast and hassle-free today blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Feb 18, 2014 in United Kingdom |

Former UK Immigration minister is not under investigation

Former immigration minister of United Kingdom Mark Harper, who hired an illegal immigrant to clean his flat in London is not under investigation announced the UK government on Sunday. The debacle with Mr Harper is a major embarrassment for the Prime Minister David Cameron, who made the fight against illegal immigration one of the main points of his campaign for the 2015 parliamentary elections. The scandal also raised doubts about the rationale behind the government decision to force employers and landowners to check the immigration status of their tenants and staff. The Labour Party which is currently in opposition said that the affair show that the new rules for immigration control introduced by the Conservative coalition are inadequate and unrealistic. Despite the scandal the UK government announced that it will not change its immigration policy and the content of the immigration bill which will be voted in the Parliament remains the same. The debate about the illegal immigration has become a major preoccupation for British politicians as the economic crisis and austerity policies raised the question of whether or not the large number of people that is coming from abroad is putting a strain on the public services and the labour market. Both legal and illegal immigration in UK surged during the last two decades especially after 2004 when former soviet block countries were accepted into the European Union. The current goal of the Conservative party is to reduce that number of net immigration to less than 100 000 people per year. This is creating a fracture in the ruling coalition as the Liberal Democrats claim that this goal might be damaging for the UK economy. The prime minister has also faced criticism from Brussels over his stance on immigration, with Laszlo Andor, the European commissioner responsible for employment, social affairs and inclusion, saying the British government’s plans in this area risked presenting the U.K. as a “nasty” country in the European Union. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Dec 14, 2013 in United Kingdom |

UK Prime Minister Cameron might veto any future enlargement of EU

The UK Prime Minister David Cameron has threatened that he will veto any further enlargement of the European Union unless a stricter immigration rules come in place. The EU Commission has already started negotiations with the strongest Balkan country which is outside the Union – Serbia. In addition to that Albania is also a potential candidate for future membership. His anti immigration comments are a response to the disquiet that rose in the UK society as a result of the fact that Bulgaria and Romania will receive a free access to the UK labor market after 1 January 2014. The European Commission has challenged Cameron to produce evidence that the free movement of people is leading to extensive abuse of countries benefit’s system. So far he has not been able to do that. One of the reasons for the Cameron’s anti-immigration rhetoric is the bitter struggle between his Conservative party and the nationalistic UKIP for winning more votes on the next UK election during 2015. High quality global journalism requires investment. After the summit Cameron said that he still considers the enlargement potential that the European Union has, as one of its biggest strengths, nevertheless a sound immigration policy is needed in order to ensure that countries with higher living standards will not see their labor markets flooded with workers from those countries that have lower living standards. According to him, EU should return to its original vision where free movement is granted only to those who are willing to work and do not seek only to gain from the benefits system of the host country. Visa First is a leading international immigration consulting company. We can help you to apply fro your United Kingdom Visa fast and hassle-free today. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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Posted on Dec 13, 2013 in United Kingdom |

UK misses again its immigration target

The UK office of national statistics has released a new data which show that the immigration target of the government is missed with 15 000 people. The net immigration is the result of people who come to the country minus those who leave it. In the year to June 2013, 503,000 people came to live, study or work in the UK and 320,000 people left the UK to live elsewhere giving a net immigration figure of 182,000; up from 167,000 in the year to June 2012. This is a huge disappointment for UK coalition’s leaders who promised to bring the immigration levels down to tens of thousands of people per year. The rise of the net immigration is mainly caused by two factors, the lower number of people which have left the country and the increased number of immigrants from with the European Union. The top five countries from where the new immigrants are comming are China, India, Poland, USA and Australia. Immigration minister Mark Harper put a positive face on the news. He pointed out that the number of immigrants to the UK had actually fallen by 14,000 from 517,000 to 503,000. Despite the lack of success the government target of less than 100 000 immigrants per year remains in place. The leader of the anti-immigration UK Independence Party Nigel Farage said ‘the fact that net migration going up, EU migration going up and immigration into the UK still running at over half a million per year is a damning indictment of this government’s failed approach to immigration’. The shadow immigration minister of the Labour government David Hanson has also criticized the ruling coalition by saying that they have failed to deliver results which matches their rhetoric against immigration. blog.visafirst.comMore...

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