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UK — Tightened recruitment laws on immigrants are holding back business

26 November 2009

The UK points-based system on employing immigrants from non-European Union (EU) countries enables employers to hire non-EU workers if their jobs are included in a list of occupations considered to have a shortage of skilled workers in the UK.

Under the new rules proposed by the Migration Advisory Committee, the period during which jobs must be advertised will be extended from two weeks to four weeks before an employer can hire an individual from outside the EU. The new rules are intended to allow British workers more time to apply.

Phil Woolas, Borders and Immigration Minister, said "we have always said that we would run our immigration system for the benefit of the UK. This change will give the Unite Kingdom workers an even better chance and more time to apply for skilled vacancies that might otherwise go to migrant workers."

Enam Ali, Chairman of the Guild of Bangladeshi Restaurateurs, told Big Hospitality that the new law would only make recruiting staff tougher for Indian restaurants in the UK, as British workers don't have the skills required to work in the sector.

Ali said "right now there is no one I can go to find a couple of skilled Indian chefs just like that. There is such a shortage of skilled workers in the UK that there is almost no point in advertising. There are no [Indian] chefs available. The government is not helping us to find workers. It is very sad and something has to be done."



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