This has been stated by the Education Secretary of Scotland Michael Russell and several other principals of leading universities.
In a joint letter to Damian Green, the UK immigration minister, Mr. Russell said that restrictions on UK student visa rules will have a poor effect on Scotland’s higher education sector.
The Coalition has proposed for new tougher UK student visa rules to curb the number of bogus students making way in the UK.
And its being felt by the university deans and Scotland Education Secretary that such steps will only hinder the entry for genuine international students and will ultimately affect the higher education sector.
It has been maintained in the letter to Mr. Green that since majority of foreign students wanting to get higher education in the UK are genuine students desirous of getting higher education, so, there is no logic in introducing tougher UK student visa rules for them.
The genuine tertiary education sector of the UK is being unnecessarily targeted with stricter UK student visa norms in order to curb abuse, however, the reality is that the abuse happens somewhere else, the letter maintains.
International students in the UK provide a significant contribution towards the funding for universities in Scotland. And several societal as well as cultural contributions by foreign students increase their significance for the UK.
Any limits on UK student visas will have a bad effect on the much needed university research, several lecturers and universities in Scotland have maintained while opposing stricter UK visa norms for skilled foreign workers.
Hence, there is an immediate need for having a flexible approach towards UK immigration in order to cater to the needs of Scotland.
The UK government has introduced a temporary cap on UK visas until a permanent cap on migrants hailing from non-EU nations coming for getting work in the UK is introduced in April next year.
Mary Senior, a Scottish official of UCU Scotland(representative body of lecturers) said since Scotland already has declining population and is suffering from shortages of skills, hence, imposing such an immigration cap does not make any sense.