Friday, 19 May 2017

What Happens for Aussie / Kiwis if the Tories are Re-Elected

New Zealanders and Australians have flocked to the UK seeking work in the last year. There are more Australian and New Zealand-born workers in the UK labour force than at any time in the last 20 years, according to new figures.

In the first quarter of 2017, there were 157,000 Australian and New Zealand-born workers in the UK Labour market. This was 31,000 more than at the same time in 2016, and beat the previous record of 150,000 in the first quarter of 2005. It is the highest number since the ONS data series began in 1997, when the figure was 78,000.

The Conservative manifesto has revealed their key plan to limit immigration. These are the four policies which could come into pace that will affect Kiwis, Australians and other foreigners hoping to move to (or already in) the UK:
  1. Doubling the Immigration Skills Charge levied on companies employing migrant workers to £2000 (NZ$3500) a year (only likely to affect Antipodeans that are sponsored)
  2. Toughening visa requirements for students, requiring them to leave the country at the end of their course unless they meet new, higher requirements. 
  3. Increasing the Immigration Health Surcharge to £600 (NZ$1050) for migrant workers and £450 (NZ$780) for international students, to cover their use of the NHS.
  4. Increasing the earnings threshold for people wishing to sponsor migrants for family visas. 
We believe that the only one to really affect Construct employees is no.3 - the doubling of the health surcharge from £300 to £600 - however Australia's High Commissioner to the UK, Alexander Downer, is hopeful that Free Trade Agreement negotiations would allow for a improvement in the situation.