Carol Monaghan, a Scottish National Party politician and Member of Parliament (MP), has kicked against the new visa policy for international students announced by the United Kingdom’s government.
According to her, the UK government’s new policy on international students visas is misjudged.
She said that Scotland would have to suffer the consequences of what she described as a ‘misjudged’ policy of the government, adding that international students enriched the UK’s society in all sectors, including health, IT and universities.
Recall that on Tuesday, the UK government slammed a restriction on student visa routes in a bid to cut net migration.
The latest policy restricts international students, including Nigerians, from bringing family members on all but postgraduate research routes.
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Specifically, the government banned people from using a student visa as a backdoor route to work in the UK, while noting that net migration was over 500,000 from June 2021 to June 2022.
A statement issued by the Secretary of State for Home Department Suella Braverman, stated that half a million student visas were issued while the number of dependents of overseas students has increased by 750% since 2019 to 136,000 people.
Braverman added that the new reforms would come into effect for students starting in January 2024 with severe restrictions around dependents.
“The government will however work with the higher education sector to explore alternative options to ensure the brightest and best students can continue to bring dependents when they study at the UK’s world-leading universities,” he added.
Figures revealed that overseas students contribute more than £4 billion to the Scottish economy, representing benefits worth thousands of pounds for residents.