Possible Abolition of Tier 1 (Investor) Visa Route
Baroness Hamwee and Lord Paddick have proposed to abolish the Tier 1 (Investor) visa route form 1 January 2017.
One of the possible reasons for the proposal is that only 200 applications were made in 2015 under this immigration category. According to them, there is a doubt that this route benefits the UK economy. There are also concerns that the Tier 1 (Investor) visa is used by criminals which prompted changes in the Immigration Rules in 2015 requiring applicants to provide criminal record checks and enhanced due diligence.
The Tier 1 (Investor) visa lost popularity since the changes were introduced to raise the investment criteria from £1million to £2 million. Chinese and Russians were the main source countries, however, applicants now opt for citizenship by investment programs offered by other European jurisdictions especially Cyprus and Malta. The economic decline in Russia and China coupled with weakened currencies is also a major factor in reduction in numbers of applications under this visa route.
It is yet unclear as to what the government intends to do to attract foreign investments into the UK to benefit the economy if at all the government intends to attract the overseas wealth. The UK Government seems to be shooting themselves in the foot and this represents one of the many disastrous changes introduced by the Home Office over past years.
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