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UK immigration has announced new measures to make it easier for foreign students who have shown entrepreneurial flair while studying for their UK university degrees to remain in the UK following graduation.
The new measures, announced by Immigration Minister Damian Green, are to be brought in to address the criticism that was received following the decision to close the post-study work visa route. The Tier 1 Post-study Work Visa, which allows graduates to work in the UK for two years after the completion of their course will no longer be available from April 2012. However, very few people will qualify for the new Tier 1 Post Study Entrepreneur Visa.
This new visa program would be offered to students who have engaged in innovative entrepreneurial activity during their studies and will enable them to stay in the UK following their graduation to develop their business ideas. The new visa route will open in April 2013.
“Now that we have moved away from the old model of mass unselective immigration we can develop the system further to encourage the brightest and best to come here,” said Green.
Students who have developed a business idea under supervision at a UK university, can apply for the new visa as long as they are sponsored by their university. It would be introduced as a one year visa and could be extended for a maximum of two years.