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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-04406: Tavish Scott (Shetland Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 2 November 2016

To ask the Scottish Government how it is engaging with the UK Government to extend the post-study work visa pilot scheme to universities in Scotland.

Answered by: Shirley-Anne Somerville 16 November 2016

The UK Government's current post study work offer is not adequate for Scotland and we have pressed the UK Government for a number of months to meet with us and discuss this issue further. The Minister for International Development and Europe has requested a meeting with the UK Immigration Minister to discuss both post study work opportunities and the scope of the Tier 4 Pilot, and I understand that a date for that meeting has now been agreed.

The Minister for International Development and Europe and I jointly wrote to the UK Immigration Minister on 5 August, asking that he reconsider widening the scope of the pilot to include Scottish higher education institutions.

The Tier 4 student visa pilot scheme falls far short of our calls for a post study work visa, and we remain concerned that the scheme was introduced without any consultation with the Scottish Government or Scottish higher education institutions.