Following the Prime Minister’s speech on immigration on 21 May 2015, the government has now published a policy paper confirming that it will be consulting on the prospect of funding apprenticeship schemes for British and EU workers by implementing a new “visa levy” on businesses that use “foreign labour”.
The concept of a visa levy on businesses was first mentioned by David Cameron in his post-election win speech and was publicised in most of the national press.
If this consultation leads to the introduction of such a levy, many fear it will place a further restriction in front of UK businesses wishing to help their businesses grow by hiring the best candidates for the required role. UK employers are already required to advertise the role before they take on migrant workers from outside of the Europe. This coupled with the high minimum salary and skills threshold for work permits, is viewed by many as already providing sufficient protection for the resident work force.