We fully support UUK's proposal for a global talent visa

Destination for Education welcomes the proposal from Universities UK (UUK) for a Global Graduate Talent Visa, an improved post-study work offer for international students in the UK.

Higher education is one of the UK’s most successful export industries, with international students making a net annual contribution of £20.3bn to the UK economy (HEPI, 2017). However, our higher education sector faces increasing competition from established markets such as Australia and Canada as well as newer markets in the Far East and Europe. The Global Graduate Talent Visa is an important step towards reclaiming our position as a leading destination for higher education. Our higher education sector is also in need of a clear and consistent cross-departmental international student strategy that would set the sector and the government an annual growth plan benchmarked against international competitors.

 The proposed visa would allow graduates that are sponsored by their university to gain work experience in the UK for up to two years, on more flexible terms than currently offered. A more extensive range of employers would also be able to benefit from access to skilled graduates from around the world, especially small and medium employers who do not have Tier 2 sponsorship licences. This aligns with what domestic students want - 75% of UK students agree that international students should have the right to work in the UK after graduation (NUS, 2017). This is key to boosting the productivity of regions across the UK, particularly as we negotiate our future post-Brexit.

James Pitman, spokesperson for Destination for Education, commented:

“The UK needs to show that it is open and keen for international students to live and study in the UK. The Global Graduate Talent Visa is an important part of achieving this as it shows that the UK recognises the many economic, social and cultural benefits that international students bring to the UK. Destination for Education is proud to champion this proposal alongside a coalition of supporters that are keen to see real change in policy surrounding international students.”


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Destination for Education is backed by a broad range of supporters, including: The UK’s leading universities; Pathway providers who help prepare international students for study in the UK; Business representatives; Campaign groups.