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UK immigration rules for construction workers could be reviewed

The government may reconsider their new controversial immigration rules for those working in construction once the COVID-19 pandemic eases.

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    UK immigration rules for construction workers could be reviewed

    The government has suggested that they may review their new immigration rules for construction workers after the pandemic eases. Lords minister Susan Williams hinted that more construction roles could be included on the Shortage Occupation List.

    Free movement between the UK and EU officially ended on 31st December 2020. Now, EU citizens must secure a Skilled Worker Visa to be able to live and work in the UK. However, the visa has several requirements, including the minimum salary threshold, which would make many construction workers ineligible.

    Jobs on the Shortage Occupation list however, are exempt from some of these requirements. Adding construction roles to this list means that it’d be easier for construction workers from the EU to work in the UK.

    Speaking about the plans on whether or not more construction roles would be added to the Shortage Occupation list, Susan Williams said:

    “We will see how the UK labour market develops in the post-COVID era.”

    Recently, Build UK warned that the new immigration rules could be extremely challenging for construction with the possibly of severe issues regarding the availability of labour within the industry. As well as this, the new rules mean that construction firms would have to get to grips with the complex responsibilities that come with being a licensed sponsor company, which they’d also need to be to hire foreign workers.

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    Construction industry
    As they stand, the new immigration rules could result in serious staffing issues for the UK construction industry (Image credit: Unsplash)