Government 'right to prioritise Tier 2 work permits'

17 Feb 2011 | Posted by Carl Thomas

The government is right to prioritise skilled workers under the Tier 2 work permit scheme, the CBI has suggested.

Yesterday (February 16th), the Home Office released further details regarding the UK immigration cap, which is due to come into force this April.

The move has been welcomed by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) for prioritising skilled workers.

The government explained that the annual limit for Tier 2 work permits will be set at 20,700 a year for skilled workers of graduate level and above. Companies wishing to employ a person from out-with the European Economic Area in a qualified position will need to apply for a Certificate of Sponsorship.

These will be divided to 1,500 places a month with 4,200 to be made available to Tier 2 work permit applicants in April, due to an expected peak in demand. Any unused places will be rolled over, but jobs on the shortage occupation list will receive preference if the allocation is oversubscribed.

Following the confirmation of the cap's implementation structure, Neil Carberry, head of employment policy at the CBI, said that the government's decision to prioritise skilled Tier 2 workers and exempt many transfers of firms' own highly-paid staff is welcome.

He added: "The government is right to be putting the emphasis on the most economically beneficial part of the system.

"As the economy recovers, it will be vital that there are sufficient numbers in Tier 2 for the UK to remain attractive as a place to invest."