The EEF factory boss’s ‘union’ gave the UK government a well-deserved kick up the bum, accusing it of being unreasonable by making it hard for skilled grads from outside of Europe to stay on and work in Britain.

It’s a point that the Australasian community, backed by London mayor Boris Johnson and TNT, has been strongly arguing for a while.

Submitting evidence to a House of Lords’ inquiry today, the bosses said the Government’s decision to abolish the so-called Tier 1 post-study work route meant many vital graduates from outside of Europe were left with no choice but to leave the UK after completing their studies.

EEF’s employment and skills guru Tim Thomas said: “Manufacturers rely on the recruitment of non-EEA graduates to meet their skills needs, particularly those that hold degrees in the sciences, technologies, engineering and maths. Government policy should not unreasonably restrict employers’ ability to access this talent pool; however industry fears that current migration policy is doing just that.

“Government should promote the value of international graduates, he went on. “It should restore the Tier 1 post-study work route, or, introduce a route which allows international STEM graduates to stay in the UK after their studies to occupy hard-to-fill roles in industries such as manufacturing.”

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