In its recently published report, Worlds Apart: Making the immigration system work for London businesses, the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry has made recommendations for significant changes to the UK’s business immigration laws.
The report’s recommendations are as follows:
1. The Government is right to seek to improve the volume and quality of UK apprenticeships but that is a longer term task. London businesses must be able to access skilled migrants in the short term. The imposition of a visa levy on non-EEA workers would be an unhelpful way of addressing the skills shortage facing the UK.
2. The Home Office should simplify the Immigration Rules for work visas, particularly online so London businesses
can navigate the system. The recent changes to visitor visas serve as a model.
3. The Government should look to approve and license credible third party sponsors. This could reduce costs and
the administrative burden on small businesses – particularly in specific emerging sectors.
4. The Resident Labour Market Test should become more flexible. Businesses should not have to use JobCentre
Plus for advertising vacancies if it is not relevant to do so, provided the advertisement runs for 28 days in two
5. The Government should task the Migration Advisory Committee to review the Shortage Occupation List and
consider introducing regional variations where there are pronounced shortages of specific skills.
6. The Government should remove international students from the net migration calculation and restore a one year
post-study work route for non-EEA students after graduation.