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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Huge job cut for immigrants in U.K.


LONDON: If you’re a doctor, a teacher or a nurse and wish to migrate to Britain, forget about it.

These are among the thousands of jobs which will be off-limits for skilled workers from outside the European Union under the points-based immigration system to come into force later this month.

The Home Office on Wednesday said there would be 2,00,000 fewer jobs available to non-EU migrants than the original estimate

“The number of positions available to migrants has been reduced from one million to just under 8,00,000, ensuring that only those foreign workers we need — and no more — can come here,” it said.

The system is designed to give preference to native Britons and offer only those jobs to foreigners that cannot be filled locally. As Britain cannot bar EU citizens from coming here and working, the rules will affect only workers from outside the EU.

New rules will require employers, wishing to bring in foreign workers, to show that suitable local candidates are not available. They will have to advertise jobs and only when they are not able to fill them locally would they be allowed to recruit foreign workers

“Tier 2 of the points system will ensure that British jobseekers get the first shot at jobs and only those foreign workers we need will be able to come to the United Kingdom,” said the Home Office statement

Border and Immigration Minister Phil Woolas said the system — aimed at cutting down immigration — was flexible enough to allow the government to raise or lower the bar according to the needs of local businesses.

“Had the points system been in place last year there would have been 12 per cent fewer people coming in to work through the equivalent work permit route. On top of this, the strict new shortage list means 2,00,000 fewer jobs are available via the shortage occupation route,” he said.

Besides a range of other restrictions, foreign workers will be required to have English language skills and enough funds to support themselves in the first month of their stay in Britain.