Sir James Dyson, the founder of the bagless vacuum cleaner company has spoken out against the UK’s immigration policy in relation to foreign students. His comments come after he announced that he plans to invest £250m in the expansion of his company headquarters in Wiltshire, creating jobs for 3,000 engineers. This is not the first time Dyson has criticised the government’s immigration policies; in November 2012, he called on the government to ease restrictions on the number of overseas students remaining in the country after their courses had ended.
Highly Skilled Migrants Needed in UK to Benefit Economy
Dyson’s plans to double the size of his headquarters and triple the number of engineers he employs, would mark the largest expansion in the company’s history. Dyson believes that there is a talent shortage in the UK and this has “exacerbated” by a change in the immigration law in April 2012 which prevents foreign postgraduate engineers from staying in the UK after they have completed their studies.
Speaking to the Telegraph, Dyson stated:
“Only 10% of engineering postgraduates are British. They all get kicked out at the end of the course because [immigration minister] Damien Green refused to give engineers an exception. These are Anglophiles who could be contributing to our economy. It’s absolutely ridiculous.”
Dyson: Highly Skilled Engineers from outside EU need to be Incentivised
Dyson stated that the company’s decision whether to expand in Malaysia and Singapore or in the UK “all depends on whether we can actually find all the engineers we need.”
“The government should be going out of its way to attract these highly skilled engineers to stay, even incentivising them, so that they can use their skills to develop technology here – for the benefit of our economy. We should be proud that these students choose the UK as their destination of choice.
The rules state that postgraduate and PhD students can be awarded a Tier 4 work permit enabling them to gain work experience full time for one year. So yes, they can stay, but only provided they find employment within a very short timeframe – that is hardly an encouragement to stay. They can only be offered a fixed-term contract rather than a permanent role as they do not have eligibility to work the UK full time.”
Successful UK Tier 2 Visa & Tier 4 Visa Applications
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