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What's in the New UK-India Migration Deal?

on Friday, 14 May 2021.

The UK and India have signed a landmark migration deal which enables Indian nationals between 18 and 30 to live and work in the UK, and vice versa, whilst enhancing the processes to return Indian nationals who do not have a legal right to be in the UK.

On 4 May 2021, the UK and Indian governments signed the Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement to address migration issues and to promote the entry of Indian nationals, subject to certain criteria, to live and work in the UK legally. The deal includes 'The Young Professionals Scheme' which will allow both British and Indian nationals to live in each other's countries for up to two years subject to the following criteria:

  • applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 30
  • they must hold a diploma or degree relevant to the job on offer OR they must have relevant professional experience for the specific employment
  • applicants must be able to express themselves in the language of the host county.

The Scheme will be subject to a quota of 3,000 places per year.

Unlike the Youth Mobility Scheme which also allows young people from certain countries to come to the UK to work for up to two years, this Scheme will be limited to those who hold relevant qualifications or experience and can demonstrate their English language ability. Further details will be announced in due course, so it remains to be seen whether applicants will require a sponsoring employer before they can submit their visa applications.

What Does This Mean for Employers?

While this deal does create an alternative immigration route for employers recruiting young people from India, it does appear to be rather limited in its scope and availability. We do not know when the Scheme is likely to be launched, nor do we have any details on whether workers holding visas under the Scheme will be able to move jobs. It therefore remains to be seen just how relevant this category will be for most employers.

UK Immigration System for Overseas Businesses Banner Mar21

If you require advice on employing workers from overseas, please contact Tom Brett Young in our Immigration team on 07393 148352, or complete the form below.

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