A new points based immigration system to be introduced to the UK from 2008 will make it easier for employers to take on skilled staff from overseas, said law firm DWF.
But the firm also warned that the new system will restrict the supply of workers relied upon as cheap labour.Under the new regime announced by Immigration Minister Liam Byrne last week, prospective immigrants will be graded in five tiers. Tier one comprises highly skilled people such as scientists and engineers, and tier five, includes unskilled young people and temporary workers. Points will be awarded to reflect aptitude, experience, age and also the level of need in a given sector.The new scheme will consolidate more than 80 existing routes of entry into the UK. A system of sponsorship by employers and educational institutions will be introduced to ensure compliance.Ansar Ali, solicitor with DWF said: 'There is a common misconception that the government's aim is to reduce the number of immigrants. This not the case. The system aims to attract the most talented workers into the UK, to tackle abuse and manage immigration more effectively. It does away with the process where an employer applies for a work permit which the employee then uses to apply for entry clearance. Instead, one application will be made from the country of origin.'