UK Announces New Measures to Prevent Immigration Abuse


The United Kingdom (UK) Home Office has announced a new series of measures to help prevent what is said to be the abuse of immigration routes to study or marry in that country.
These are the latest in the series of measures implemented by the British government over the past two years to tighten its immigration process. Last year changes to the UK visa regime meant that persons on visitors’ visas could not change their status to that of students, and those getting married while on a visitors’ visa, had to return to their country of origin to apply for settlement.
The measures, which a release from the Home Office said were developed over several months, include an accreditation scheme for genuine colleges and marriage proposals, and plans to restrict authorisation for marriages involving foreign nationals to specialist register offices closely supported by the Immigration Service.
There will also be new units bringing together case working and immigration service expertise, to better analyse intelligence and step up operations against bogus colleges and sham marriages.
Home Secretary, David Blunkett also announced that quotas for workers in agriculture, hospitality and food processing would be reduced in light of the enlargement of the European Union in May.
“Globalisation means that many more people now choose to study, work or live for a time outside their countries of origin. Movement of people is a feature of the Twenty First Century affecting all major industrialised nations. We cannot and should not shut the door to workers, investors, genuine students, relatives and friends from other countries. But we must continue to strive to ensure that our immigration system is robust in preventing those without the right to enter or stay on in Britain from bending the rules. This is an on-going process, not a question of quick fixes,” Mr. Blunkett said.
He pointed out that the majority of foreign students were genuine and brought substantial economic benefits to the UK.
A report from the British Council this week showed that overseas students contribute

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