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Foreign Nationals

Volume 450: debated on Wednesday 25 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the policy of his Department is in relation to the issue of work permits for foreign nationals; and if he will make a statement. (85393)

The work permit arrangements are a key part of the Government’s managed migration strategy, which seeks to offer legal routes for the admission of foreign nationals who possess skills and qualifications that are in short supply here and who will contribute to the economy. We also wish to encourage and support inward investment. Work permit policy is designed to strike the right balance between enabling UK based employers to recruit or transfer skilled people from abroad and protecting job opportunities for resident workers.

As part of our Five year Strategy for Asylum and Immigration, ‘Controlling our Borders: Making Migration work for Britain’ announced in 2005, we will be replacing the current routes for employment-related migration by a simpler, single points-based system. This was outlined in the Command paper ‘A Points Based System: Making Migration Work for Britain’ published on seven March 2006.