Campaign for visa-free movement across the Commonwealth

22 May 2017 | Posted by Carl Thomas

A petition demanding visa-free movement between former Commonwealth allies, including the UK, Canada and Australia, has now been signed by 191,000 people.

Organised by CANZUK International, the petition argues that the “unique” relationship between the countries could allow all involved to benefit from visa-free movement, which would represent a boost for the fourth latest economic area in the world.

The petition reads: “Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom share the same head of state, the same common-law legal system, the same western culture, the same respect for democracy and even the same language.”

Campaigners added that the move could be well timed for the UK as it prepares to leave the European Union’s free movement zone, providing its allies with easy access to UK visas and Britons with similar benefits overseas.

Founder of CANZUK, James Skinner, commented: “Now that we have voted to leave the European Union, we can advance the ever-growing diplomatic, economic and political connections that we already share through our Commonwealth ties, and embrace the countless benefits that free movement between the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and Canada would bring.”

According to the Express, a senior Canadian member of parliament and candidate for leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, Michael Chong MP, has also declared his support for the introduction of UK visas and free movement between the three states.

Similarly, former Mayor of London Boris Johnson has called for free labour mobility zone between the UK and Australia, with the possibility of extending elsewhere. This could allow citizens of the countries involved to gain access to free UK work permits and help fill skills gaps across the UK.