A new report says Australians will be discriminated against under the United Kingdom’s new visa laws.
Over 60% of the UK businesses surveyed in the report commissioned by Alexander Downer, Australia’s High Commissioner to the UK, say they will be less likely to employ Australians under the new amendments.
Further restrictions on companies transferring staff and on a spouse’s ability to find work will make it increasingly difficult for Aussies to find work in Britain.
“The UK’s refusal to allow in-country switching deters employers and discriminates against Australians,” the report states.
“The changes are making this country a less welcoming destination for Australians”.
The tightening of the UK’s visa requirements has been ongoing for several years as the Conservative government has sought to clamp down on immigration numbers.
Britain is obliged to comply with EU laws which allow the free flow of labour between member states. Therefore, a UK government looking to limit immigration numbers can effectively only legislate on non-EU immigration of which Australia, despite the shared history and being a Commonwealth cousin, is a part.
Australia has been “caught up” in this, Mr Downer told 7 News.
London Mayor Boris Johnson has long been a champion of Australians coming to work in the city and has previously argued to make it easier for Aussies, Kiwis and Britons to work in each other’s countries.
However, the mayor’s office sounded a more conciliatory tone following the report and the immanent visa changes being implemented by the nationally governing Conservative party of which he is a member.
“The Mayor has long argued for a fair but firm visa system that attracts talented people from across the world to come to London to live and work,” a spokesman for Mr Johnson told News Corp.