According to recent Home Office Statistics, the number of UK visas issued between September 2017 and September 2018 was the highest since 2009. The UK work permit level raised by 5% over this one-year period, with experts attributing the boost to the 7% in rise in tier 2 work permit visas for skilled workers. According to the latest reports, around 55% of work permit UK approvals went out to Indian nationals.
Additionally, ONS statistics found that net immigration UK applications from people outside of the EU are also the highest that they have been since 2004, with around 248,000 more non-EU citizens entering the company than leaving. According to the managing director of Migrate UK, a UK immigration consultant firm, said that recruiters are beginning to look outside of Europe for the skills they need, with Brexit on the horizon.
Today, the demand for tier 2 work permits is increasing as business leaders find it increasingly difficult to fill vacancies in their business left for skilled workers. Interestingly, many experts have found that Indian clients delivering IT teams to help with insurance and finance projects in the UK are making up a large portion of the increase in UK visas.
When you combine the rise of UK work permits for people outside of the EU, to the fall of EU nationals working in the UK, it's safe to say that people are feeling the pinch from Brexit. ONS released statistics in November 2018 stating that the number of EU nationals applying for UK visas dropped by approximately 132,000 in the three months leading to September. This reduction represents the most significant drop in work permit UK applications since records started in 1997.
As skill and labour shortages in the UK continue to increase, many businesses are concerned that they might not be able to find the talent they need inside the UK. Brexit arrives at a time when employers are already struggling to find the expertise that they need. It remains to be seen how the changing relationships between the UK and other countries effect our workplaces and the economy going forward.