Indian alerts UK over strict visa rules
United Kingdom, 17th April: India has warned the UK regarding obstacles faced by several Indian IT firms in obtaining UK visas.
Anand Sharma, India’s commerce, industry and textiles minister stated that if the UK does not take any action in this regard, Indian IT companies will have no option but to relocate outside the UK.
UK must improve business environment, visa rules—Currently in London to take part in the 8th round of JETCO(India-UK Joint Meeting of Economic and Trade Commission), Sharma said Indian IT firms have been facing delays in acquisition of firms in the UK.
In addition, many Indian firms as well as Indian nationals were also facing unnecessary visa delays due to vague UK visa norms, the minister informed during his meeting with Dr. Vince Cable, UK Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills and Mr. George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer.
And recent rules introduced by the UK immigration on non-EU immigration are also posing obstacles for numerous Indian IT firms located in the UK.
All this is having a serious impact on the business environment between the two nations, Mr. Sharma maintained.
ICTs of IT experts treated as prospective immigrants—The fact that the UKBA(UK Border Agency) considered the ICTs(Intra company transfers) of IT experts, highly skilled workers and other professionals as prospective immigrants was having serious effects on the Indian firms’ performance in the UK, the Indian minister highlighted during the meeting.
He was all praises for the UK government’s pledge to bring down the UK immigration levels to ‘tens of thousands’.
While highlighting the fact that Indian professionals have been making considerable contributions to the UK economy, he clarified that Indians coming to the UK through ICTs did not have any intention to keep staying in the UK after the expiry of their contract with their employer firms.
So, there was no logic in considering them as prospective immigrants, Mr. Sharma affirmed. The recent announcement by the UK immigration department to discontinue the immigration route of UK PSW(UK Post Study Work) visa has dampened hopes of several Indians wanting to study and work in the UK.
This has compelled them to seek alternatives for pursuing studies abroad.