Immigration Restrictions ‘A Threat to Construction Delivery’

NEW GOVERNMENT IMMIGRATION POLICY which closes off the UK to low-skilled workers and labourers is a threat to house building targets according to industry bodies.

Revealed by Home Secretary Priti Patel, the new policy will come into place on 1 January 2021 and will meant here is no immigration route for low-skilled workers and labourers.

Those looking to move to the UK will need education to A-Level standard plus a job offer with a minimum salary of £25,600.

It is estimated 70% of the existing EU workforce would not meet the requirements of the skilled worker route.

Priti Patel

Home Secretary Priti Patel said, “We’re ending free movement, taking back control of our borders and delivering on the people’s priorities by introducing a new UK points-based immigration system, which will bring overall migration numbers down.

“We will attract the brightest and the best from around the globe, boosting the economy and our communities, and unleash this country’s full potential.”

Unrealistic expectations

Chief Executive of the Federation of Master Builders (FMB), Brian Berry, criticised the policy, highlighting the gaps in the domestic workforce.

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the Federation of Master Builders (FMB)

Brian Berry said: “If we are to have an infrastructure revolution and build a million new homes over the next five years, we will need to have an immigration system that allows for key construction workers of all skill levels to come UK. of all skill levels.

“Today’s announcement that there will no longer be a route for “low skill” workers to come to the U.K. after next year will hamper the construction industry’s capacity to deliver on key projects.”

“We will need general labourers as much as architects or surveyors. They are a core part of the construction industry and it’s simply unrealistic to assume the domestic workforce will fill this gap in the next nine months.”

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors was also critical of the move and its potential impact on construction.

Hew Edgar, Head of RICS UK Government Relations & City Strategy, said: “The government says it is committed to delivering a million homes by the end of this parliament, but there aren’t enough people to build them.

“RICS is working to increase skills and train people here in the UK, but this new points-based system could get in the way of construction companies employing the migrant labourers they need.

“Stopping people who know how to build houses from working here risks ministers not getting the numbers of new homes they want – it’s as plain and simple as that.”

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