BBPA: Government Immigration Plans Will Provide Huge Challenge For Pubs

The British Beer & Pub Association has responded to the Government’s announcement of a new points-based immigration system today.

The new system will assign points for specific skills, qualifications, salaries or professions and visas will only be awarded to those who gain enough points. There will be no specific route for lower-skilled workers although the Youth Mobility Scheme will be continued.

Skilled workers will need to meet a number of relevant criteria, including specific skills and the ability to speak English, to be able to work in the UK. All applicants will be required to have a job offer and, in line with the Migration Advisory Committee’s (MAC) recommendations, meet a minimum salary threshold.

Commenting on the new points-based immigration system, Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said:

“The new points-based immigration system will present significant challenges for our sector. Many pubs rely on workers from overseas, so it is hard to see how they will cope with such fundamental changes coming into effect in just ten months. Pubs will especially struggle with the costs and complexities of becoming a sponsoring employer in order to take on staff from outside the UK.

“The new points-based system should recognise the staff shortages our sector faces, therefore enabling talent coming to the UK to work in pubs by making up points elsewhere. We will continue to press our case with the Government to ensure they understand this need, so that the pub and hospitality sectors continue to thrive. We believe it is crucial that, for example, the Youth Mobility Scheme is now expanded to help facilitate this.”