Liberal Democrats Business Secretary Vince Cable, has urged the UK Government to reconsider their plans to make certain overseas visitors to the UK pay a £3,000 bond to obtain visit visa’s because it sends out the “wrong message” about the UK. As reported last month, Theresa May announced a pilot scheme to make visitor’s from India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Ghana to make visitor’s pay a £3000 bond when applying for visas. The scheme is set to roll out in November this year and reinforces the opinion that the UK Government is making it increasingly difficult for visitor’s to visit relatives in the UK.
Coalition Split: UK Immigration Bonds Will Damage International Relations
Vince Cable has attacked the coalition’s immigration policy and has spoken out against the Government’s plans to press on with the immigration bond pilot in November. The scheme announced by Theresa May in June this year caused much controversy in the media and the government’s in Delhi and Abuja expressed “strong displeasure” about the plans.
Speaking to the Financial Times he stated:
“It is very disappointing and it has not been agreed across the coalition and it seems to send the wrong message that Britain is closed for business.”
UK Immigration Bonds “Unpopular” Amongst Political Parties
The idea of imposing immigration bonds on visitor’s was originally proposed by Nick Clegg as a way of making his party appear tough on immigration. This policy has now proved unpopular with many others in the parliamentary party.
Vince Cable stated: “The Liberal Democrats agreed for a bond scheme as an additional route for people who have been turned down, it was never meant to apply to everyone.
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