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Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs | Immigration Matters

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Another report confirms fears that the government’s student visa clampdown is having a detrimental effect on the higher education sector and the UK economy.

A cross-party group of British Members of Parliament (MPs) say students should be excluded from net migration statistics, Times Education reports.

In a report released today, the Home Affairs Committee argues that this would allow the government to achieve its aim of reducing net migration to below 100,000 by 2015 without damaging the economy, to which international students contribute several billion pounds.

The work of the UK Border Agency (December 2011-March 2012) says that this migration target cannot be hit “without drastically reducing the number of people who come to study in Britain”.

“It is likely that this would damage a strong sector of our economy and also the cultural diversity of our universities,” it says.

The report says that it is “important” that the UK “does not fall behind its international competitors in this market” by making itself less attractive to students.

Earlier this year, a group of UK universities called on the government to remove overseas students from immigration figures.

Tough anti-immigration rhetoric and visa restrictions are not helping, as UK universities heads complained to the government last month.

The latest warning came from 68 university chancellors who claimed that the UK’s Tier 4 visa immigration policy risked damaging the UK universities and genuine students could be discouraged from applying.

Universities UK, which represents 134 higher education institutions, recently cautioned that Britain will lose billions of pounds unless the coalition urgently abandons new immigration rules for overseas students.

On 8 July The Sunday Times reported that the prime minister, David Cameron, was considering such a change.

But Damian Green, the immigration minister, told the committee that it would be a “denial of reality” not to count students in the same figures as those coming to Britain for other reasons, such as to work.

The committee’s report also recommends that face-to-face interviews become compulsory for all foreign students “where it is practical and appropriate to do so”.

“This will uphold public confidence in the immigration system and help to counter damaging government rhetoric which conflates a reduction in the number of student visas with eliminating fraud in the system,” the report says.

It also recommends that what it calls “bogus colleges” should be subject to “unannounced, robust and thorough” inspections.

Overseas students in the UK are complaining they are trapped in a legal limbo by visa delays which mean they do not have the right either to stay or go back home, a BBC report has confirmed.

Student visa holders claim they have waited for up to five months without their passports.

Hundreds have signed a protest petition claiming their “basic rights” are being denied by delays in processing visas.

The UK Border Agency said applications from students would be “worked through by the end of the summer”.

The National Union of Students (NUS) says this is becoming a “serious problem” and a “complete outrage” which puts at risk the ability of UK universities to attract overseas students.

Cynthia Barker of Immigration Advisers Bison Management said she has seen an ‘upsurge in refusals and visa appeal cases’.

‘Clients are also suffering long delays in processing everything from ILR, UK Naturalisation, Student Visas and Yellow Card applications’, she added.

With a combination of high local fees and new visa rules deterring overseas students, many are predicting that some UK Universities may be forced to close.

Following a raft of student visa clampdowns, the UK has this month launched a global charm offensive to convince foreign students it is “not against immigration”, Damian Green has said.

See also:

New Government funded courses available for Bulgarian and Romanian EU students

UKBA immigration case backlog the size of Newcastle MP’s claim

Overseas students trapped in UK visa delays

Parliament take emergency action to save immigration system after court says it has been operating illegally since 2008

UK Border immigration officials to strike next week during Olympic arrivals

Immigration Minister now tells foreign students to please come and study in UK

Visa and Immigration Appeals on the increase

Full right of appeal removed for UK family visit visa

Overseas students and workers can qualify for a tax refund 

Visa overstayers will be refused under new UK Immigration Rules

New visa rules for overseas students ‘will cost billions’ say Universities UK

Students applying for UK visas from Pakistan face new English language test

UK must attract overseas students which are key to future prosperity

UKBA confirm changes to the Immigration Rules which start on 6 April 2012

How Romanians and Bulgarians working illegally without Yellow Card or papers can legalise their status in the UK

If you need any immigration advice or are worried about the new immigration rules or need help with Sponsorship or Tier 2, Tier 4, applying for university if your college has closed down, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, Dependant Visa or an Appeal against a refusal, or if you have been waiting for a reply from the Home Office for longer than a year, please email: 

info@immigrationmatters.co.uk or visit www.immigrationmatters.co.uk for free immigration news updates.

Overseas students and workers can qualify for a tax refund 

You could qualify for a tax refund if you are an overseas student, work permit holder, Tier 1, Yellow or Blue Card holder – in fact any visa type – even if you are no longer legal or even in the UK!

Majestic College offer special packages for EU students and access to fully funded courses with NO UPFRONT FEES. They also have a number of employers looking for staff right now and are willing to employ Bulgarians and Romanians.

For more information call Joanna on 0208 207 1020 or email   info@majesticcollege.org

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16 Responses to “Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs”
Read them below or add one

  1. […] Meanwhile, reports found that net migration had decreased by 25% in the past year, and that this was, in part, down to fewer international students. This was, various media sources reported, either down to individuals realising they could no longer get into the UK under false pretences or because potential students were being ‘put off’ by a toxic mix of tough new policies, negative publicity and unnecessary bureaucracy. (Conservative) Mayor of London Boris Johnson called on the UK government to make immigration rules more welcoming to international students (‘the global leaders of the future’). In an interview, he revealed that overseas students contribute £2.5 billion a year to the economy of London alone. Johnson called for UK immigration figures to exclude international students. It was reported that, months earlier, universities minister David Willetts had pushed for this, but the then immigration minister Damian Green had claimed that would be a ‘denial of reality’. […]

  2. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  3. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  4. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  5. […] be better informed”. A hint that the government may be listening to the sector as well as a cross party group of senior MP’s who have urged Ministers to rethink their policies on net […]

  6. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  7. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  8. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  9. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  10. […] party MP’s and University leaders have called for overseas students not to be included in the target to reduce migration figures, but this was rejected by ministers. Source: […]

  11. […] cross-party group of British Members of Parliament (MPs) last month said that overseas students should be excluded from net migration figures which the government has pledged to […]

  12. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  13. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  14. […] Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs […]

  15. […] group of British Members of Parliament (MPs) joined University Chancellors in warning that overseas students should be excluded from net migration figures to avoid causing irreparable damage to Britain’s world class education […]

  16. It’s all too late for the British government to make trustful and credible face to international students… they are not the only country in the world anyways,there are far more better and world class quality education in the world of which British failed to prove and possess it after all that had happened giving NO consideration and support to international students from being a victim of their non-sense rulies and law as they became partners robbing the international student’s hard-earned/blood money way abck home.

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