The UK Government has announced that it intends to introduce a new “start-up” visa for people who want to start up a business in the UK.
According to the Government, this new route aims to make the visa process faster and smoother for entrepreneurs coming to the UK. It will replace a visa route that was exclusively for graduates, and therefore should open it up to a wider pool of talented business entrepreneurs; however people applying for this new visa will need to have an endorsement from a university or approved business sponsor, including accelerators.
“The UK can be proud that we are a leading nation when it comes to tech and innovation, but we want to do more to attract businesses to the UK and our migration system plays a key part in that,” explained the Home Secretary, Sajid Javid. “That’s why I am pleased to announce a new visa for people wanting to start a business in the UK. This will help to ensure we continue to attract the best global talent and maintain the UK’s position as a world-leading destination for innovation and entrepreneurs.”
The expanded route is due to launch in Spring 2019 and the Government has said that further details will be made available at a later date.
In addition to announcing the new visa route, the Government has recently given an insight into the numbers and types of visas granted over a twelve-month period, which show that the UK continues to be a popular destination for people choosing to migrate for work, study or family reasons.
According to the figures, a total of 2.7 million visas were granted in the year ending March 2018. Of these, nearly 2.1 million (77%) were to visit and 8% were for study.
Looking at the figures in more detail, they reveal that 162,874 work-related visas were granted in the year ending March 2018, which is a drop of 1% compared to the previous year. This total included:
When it comes to immigration for the purposes of studying, there were 223,839 Tier 4 Study-related visas granted during the year, a 7% increase on the previous year. Over the same period, the number of University-sponsored study visa applications rose 6% to 178,612, which included an 8% increase for Russell Group universities to 87,175.
Three nationalities (Chinese, Indian and US) apparently accounted for over half (53%) of the 223,839 Study-related visas granted in the year, with the largest number granted to Chinese nationals (88,657, or 40% of the total).
The figures also revealed a slight fall in the number of visas issued for family immigration. The combined total number of Family-related visas granted, including EEA Family permits granted to non-EEA nationals, and visas granted to dependants of other visa holders (excluding visitors) fell by 1% to 134,789 over the twelve-month period.
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Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.
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