Sunak considers axing student visas to fix migration surge

Suella Braverman visits immigration processing centre in Dover

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Rishi Sunak is considering cutting the number of student visas in the UK, as the Government is examining “all options” to fix the migration system. The Prime Minister’s official spokesperson today said the Government is considering looking at the numbers of “students and dependents” coming to the UK, especially those with “low-quality degrees”. He added: “Our points-based system is specifically designed to give us flexibility over these sorts of issues.”

This comes after it was revealed this morning that net migration has risen above pre-Brexit levels.

The latest figures, published this morning, show that net migration rose to 504,000 in the year to June 2022.

Net migration for the year ending June 2015 – the year before the UK voted to leave the EU – was 336,000.

The new net migration figure is an increase of 331,000 in a single year.

In September, the Home Secretary said she would try to get overall migration down to the “tens of thousands”.

Yesterday, Ms Braverman admitted that the Government has “failed” to control the UK’s borders, adding: “I and the Prime Minister are absolutely determined to fix this problem.”

The Prime Minister’s spokesperson said today’s figures “reflect unprecedented global events”.

He added: “The PM is fully committed to bringing overall numbers down.

“The public will rightly expect us to deliver control over borders.”

Responding to the figures, Ms Braverman said she remained committed to reducing migration.

She said: “The public rightly expects us to control our borders and we remain committed to reducing migration over time in line with our manifesto commitment.

“This level of migration has put pressure on accommodation and housing supply, health, education and other public services.

“We must ensure we have a sustainable, balanced and controlled approach which is why we continue to keep our immigration policies under review.

“My priority remains tackling the rise in dangerous and illegal crossings and stopping the abuse of our system.

“It is vital we restore public confidence and take back control of our borders.”

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