What is the change? The Migration Advisory Committee has opened a Call for Evidence seeking comments from businesses and other immigration stakeholders regarding salary thresholds and a points-based style immigration system post-Brexit.

What does the change mean? The deadline for submitting comments is Nov. 5. The MAC is expected to issue a report by early next year and the government is expected to introduce a new immigration system on Jan. 1, 2021.

  • Implementation time frame: The Call for Evidence closes on Nov. 5. A MAC report is expected by January 2020. A new immigration system will be introduced Jan. 1, 2021.
  • Visas/permits affected: All points-based categories, including Tier 2 visas for high-skilled workers.
  • Business impact: The design of the new immigration system will have a significant impact on the ability of U.K. companies to attract, hire and retain foreign workers, both European and non-European.
  • Next steps: As the MAC is on a tight deadline to complete its work, businesses and individuals that wish to respond to the Call for Evidence should do so by the deadline of 9 a.m. on Nov. 5.

Background: In 2018, the MAC issued a report on EEA migration and the future U.K. immigration system and recommended that existing salary thresholds should be maintained in the Tier 2 (General) route that currently covers high-skilled non-EEA workers. The government only partially adopted the recommendations on salary thresholds and, on June 24, commissioned the MAC to further study salary thresholds and the future thresholds that should be set under the U.K.’s post-Brexit immigration system.

On Sept. 6, the government then commissioned the MAC to study various models of points-based immigration systems, in particular Australia’s system, and propose recommendations on how the U.K. can strengthen its labor force and attract global talent through its immigration system.

The MAC is made up of independent economic experts and is commissioned by the U.K. government to provide data and recommendations on migration. The committee’s findings and recommendations are not binding, but are highly influential on government policy.

Analysis & Comments: U.K. businesses that rely on non-resident labor are strongly encouraged to participate in the Call for Evidence. The future immigration system and the minimum salary levels that will be set for foreign workers in various sectors will have a direct impact on the ability of companies to access to global talent.

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