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Scottish Affairs Committee receives Government response on its immigration report

27 May 2022

The Scottish Affairs Committee has received the Government’s response to its predecessor Committee’s report, Immigration and Scotland.

Since report publication in July 2018, the immigration system in the UK has undergone significant reforms, in addition to leaving the European Union, the covid-19 pandemic had a major impact on immigration. The Scottish Secretary points out in his response that non-EEA work visa applications are back to pre-pandemic levels, and EEA work visas have been increasing since the end of EU free movement.

 

At the time of publishing its report, the Committee raised concern that the points-based immigration system was complicated and bureaucratic. In the Scottish Secretary’s response, he states that reforms are ongoing to streamline and simplify the system. He also offers an update on the latest quarterly statistics on EU immigration, showing that as of 31 December 2021, more than six million EU nationals and their families have been granted status under the EU Settlement Scheme, of which nearly 300,000 are in Scotland.

 

Chair's comments

 

Scottish Affairs Committee Chair, Pete Wishart MP, said:

 

“I am pleased that our Committee has finally received the Government’s response to the predecessor Committee’s report on immigration. However, such a delayed response has made it almost impossible for the Committee to track and scrutinise the impact immigration reforms are having on the people of Scotland.

 

The predecessor Committee, which I chaired, would no doubt be disappointed that the Government response failed to address recommendations that could have benefited Scotland. This includes helping to tailor the immigration system to the needs of Scotland, such as through a Scotland specific shortage occupation list.”

Further information

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