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Immigration has really become even more of a hot topic over the last couple of months and is looking to be one of the big debating points of the next general election. Although part of this is the pressure being put on the main three parties by the rise of the UK Independence Party.
However, it’s not just UKIP that have been putting the pressure on David Cameron and the Conservatives recently. The UK Prime Minister is currently under fire for the lack of results he has had so far on a promise that he made before the general elections. As part of his pre-2010 election promises, David Cameron outlined plans to reduce net migration to the UK to 100,000 before the next general elections.
According to a report by the Office for National Statistics, this is not looking likely to bare fruit. Net Long-Term Migration to the UK was estimated to be around 243,000 for the year ending in March 2014, this figure has nearly doubled the number in the 12 months previously which was around 175,000.
David Cameron’s defence on this matter was that people leaving the UK to work in other EU countries and people coming to work in the UK from those countries is “in broad balance” and that, in order to make a difference, the cuts must come from non-EU migrants.
One of the ways in which the Conservatives have attempted to cut the amount of non-EU migrants in the UK is to toughen up the student visa rules. This has not sat well with academics some of which have spoken out against the cuts.
“For the first time in decades, the number of international students at our universities has dropped, most markedly from India” Said Professor Andrew Hamilton, Vice Chancellor of Oxford University. He then went on to point out that the benefits that foreign students bring to the UK “far outstrips the level of public investment in our sector.”
A solution that has been talked a lot about recently to tackle the issue of immigration has been to adopt a points based system. This isn’t anything new for the UK who currently utilise a points system to decide whether or not someone can successfully apply in each of the UK visa tiers. Due to the fact that each individual tier awards points for different attributes, one might find that they may be more successful applying for one tier rather than the other.
If you want to know more about the immigration figures for the UK, or maybe you want to know more about the UK tier system/points based system and which visa you’re best applying for? Contact one of our immigration experts for more information.