Indians top UK’s skilled worker, student visa tally as Sunak govt tightens visa rules

  • Indian nationals were the top nationality for visas in the ‘Worker’ category, representing one third of grants, and were by far the top nationality for both the ‘Skilled Worker’ and ‘Skilled Worker - Health and Care’ visas, home office report states

Edited By Sanchari Ghosh
First Published26 May 2023
UK PM Rishi Sunak vowed to end the illegal immigration issue.
UK PM Rishi Sunak vowed to end the illegal immigration issue.(AFP)

Indian nationals emerged as the leading recipients of skilled worker and student visas in the UK over the past year, according to official immigration statistics released in London.

The data come only a day after UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman announced a new immigration policy that puts a restriction on student visa holders to bring their dependent family members to the country and removes the ability for international students to switch to work visa before finishing their courses.

The data compiled by the UK Home Office and the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reveals that Indians topped the list for cross-sector skilled work visas, including targeted healthcare visas to address staff shortages in the National Health Service (NHS). Moreover, they constituted the largest group of students granted visas under the new Graduate post-study work route, accounting for a significant 41% of all grants.

“Indian nationals were the top nationality for visas in the ‘Worker’ category, representing one third (33 per cent) of grants, and were by far the top nationality for both the ‘Skilled Worker’ and ‘Skilled Worker - Health and Care’ visas,” the Home Office analysis notes.

“A total of 92,951 Graduate route extensions were granted to previous students in the year ending March 2023. Indian nationals represented the largest group of students granted leave to remain on the Graduate route, representing 41 per cent of grants,” it said.

According to the latest statistics, skilled worker visas granted to Indians rose 63 per cent, from 13,390 in 2021-22 to 21,837 in 2022-23. In the healthcare visa category, Indians registered an even higher 105 per cent hike from 14,485 to 29,726.

“There were 138,532 sponsored study visa grants to Indian nationals in year ending March 2023, an increase of 53,429 ( 63 per cent) compared to year ending March 2022 and the largest number of study visas granted to any nationality. Grants to study for Indian nationals have risen markedly since year ending March 2019 and are now around seven times higher,” the analysis notes.

“Nigeria had the highest number of dependants (66,796) of sponsored study visa holders in the year ending March 2023, increasing from 27,137 in the year ending March 2022. Indian nationals had the second highest number of dependants, increasing from 22,598 to 42,381,” it notes.

 

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HomeNewsworldIndians top UK’s skilled worker, student visa tally as Sunak govt tightens visa rules

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