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Immigration Reforms to Assist Tech Businesses Announced in the Budget

on Friday, 05 March 2021.

On 3 March 2021, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, delivered the Budget - a statement that was keenly awaited to see how the Government proposes to help the UK recover from the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Among the measures highlighted by the Treasury are "reforms to the immigration system [which] will help ambitious UK businesses attract the brightest and best international talent". The detail contained within the supporting documents to the Budget suggests that many of these reforms will be welcomed by tech businesses looking to attract and retain highly skilled international talent.

New and reformed immigration categories are proposed, including:

  • introducing within the next 12 months an 'elite points-based visa' which will include a ’scaleup’ stream, enabling those with a job offer from a recognised UK scale-up to qualify for a fast-track visa
  • a review of the Innovator visa to make it easier for those with the skills and experience to found an innovative business to obtain a visa
  • launching a new Global Business Mobility visa by spring 2022 for overseas businesses to establish a presence or transfer staff to the UK

Other reforms to the immigration system which may make things easier for smaller businesses, including tech startups, include:

  • practical support for small firms that are using the immigration system for the first time
  • modernising the visa sponsorship system to make it easier to use (a delivery roadmap is promised for summer 2021)

As is the case with any government announcements concerning immigration, it is not until we have further details that we will know precisely how useful these new categories and reforms will be. Nevertheless, these announcements promise some helpful reforms for businesses and look forward to seeing further detail.

For further information about these announcements and the support VWV's Immigration team offer technology businesses and entrepreneurs, please contact Tom Brett Young on 07393 148352, or complete the form below.

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