The UK government has announced a series of measures to reduce the number of migrants coming to the country through legal channels, including raising the minimum salary threshold for work visas by 33%.
Home Secretary James Cleverly told parliament on Monday that migrants seeking to work in the UK will need to earn at least £38,700 ($48,900) a year, up from the current £26,000. He also said that overseas care workers will no longer be able to bring their family members with them, and that employers will have to pay the full market rate for workers on the shortage occupation list.
Cleverly said the government aims to cut net annual immigration by 300,000 “in future years”, but did not give a specific timeline. He said the British people are “absolutely right” to want lower immigration levels, both legal and illegal.
The move comes after net migration to the UK reached a record high of 745,000 last year, according to official data. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who faces an election next year, has faced criticism from his own Conservative Party over his handling of immigration issues.