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UKIE responds to Migration Advisory Committee immigration post-Brexit report

CEO Dr. Jo Twist: "Expanding the current Tier 2 system to EEA citizens would prove inefficient and cumbersome for the industry"

UKIE has released a statement in response to a report published by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC), which analysed the impact of Brexit on migration from the EU and made recommendations to reduce negative impact on the economy.

The final report praises the positive economic impact of skilled labour migrating in from the EU, and recommends expanding the current Tier 2 into an effective work permit system for EEA citizens wishing to migrate post-Brexit.

Specific recommendations include lifting a cap on Tier 2 migration and expanding it to cover medium-skilled jobs as well as high-skilled jobs while maintaining a salary threshold of £30,000.

In response, UKIE has issued a statement criticising several of the recommendations, which it says do not go far enough to sustain the speed at which smaller and mid-size companies in the gaming industry need to move with their hires - well over half of which involve those from outside the UK.

"We welcome the recognition by the MAC of the value and contribution that highly-skilled, diverse talent makes to the UK economy and innovation - 61% of UK games companies employs international talent," said UKIE CEO Dr. Jo Twist OBE. "However, expanding the current Tier 2 system to EEA citizens would prove inefficient and cumbersome for the industry, which is characterised by fast-moving small and medium sized companies. The existing Tier 2 scheme has already come under intense criticism from companies small and large. In order for us to remain competitive when these skill sets are in high demand, we urge the government to make wholesale smart changes to modernise the system now, including removing the need for a Resident Labour Market Test, to minimise costs, time delays, and red tape.

"Ukie has consistently urged Government to review the entire visa system and have recommended a smart, frictionless, data driven system be put in place in order to address severe skills shortages, particularly in more technical, STEM-related roles."

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Rebekah Valentine: Rebekah arrived at GamesIndustry in 2018 after four years of freelance writing and editing across multiple gaming and tech sites. When she's not recreating video game foods in a real life kitchen, she's happily imagining herself as an Animal Crossing character.
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