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Latest Update On UK Graduate Visa 22nd May 2024 UK Post Study Work Permit Update

UK graduate route Visa Expected Changes

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is reportedly considering significant changes to the UK’s post-study visa program, known as the Graduate Route Visa.





 

This visa allows graduates to remain and work in the UK for up to two years after completing their degree. The move is part of an effort to address rising legal migration figures. However, this potential repeal is facing strong opposition from several key members of his Cabinet.


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Cabinet Opposition and Concerns

According to ‘The Observer,’ Sunak’s plan to restrict or even end the Graduate Route has met resistance from prominent Cabinet ministers, including Education Secretary Gillian Keegan, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, and Foreign Secretary David Cameron. These ministers, along with university and business leaders, argue that such a move could significantly reduce the UK’s attractiveness to international students.





 


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Impact on International Students and Universities

The Graduate Route, launched in 2021, has been particularly popular among international students. Brian Bell, Chair Professor of the independent Migration Advisory Committee (MAC), emphasized that international students would be disproportionately affected by any restrictions. The MAC report found no evidence of abuse within the Graduate Route and recommended its continuation.

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Economic and Educational Concerns

John Foster, Chief Policy and Campaigns Officer for the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), highlighted the economic contributions of international students, noting their role in boosting local economies and supporting undergraduate teaching and innovation. Universities UK (UUK) echoed these concerns, urging the government to end the uncertainty surrounding the visa route.


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Political Context and Future Measures

With a general election looming, the Sunak-led government is under pressure to curb high migration figures. As quarterly immigration statistics are set to be released next week, further measures to clamp down on migration are anticipated. However, the potential repeal of the Graduate Route Visa has sparked significant debate, reflecting the broader challenges of balancing migration control with the benefits brought by international students.





 

This ongoing discussion underscores the critical role of international students in the UK’s educational and economic landscape and the potential repercussions of altering the post-study work opportunities available to them.

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