Industry welcomes Homes Affairs Select Committee report on immigration and skills shortages

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Commenting on the Home Affairs Select Committee report on immigration and skills shortages published today, Tim Thomas, Head of Employment & Skills policy at EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation, said:

“With the government trying to bulldoze through further changes to immigration policy that will hinder businesses ability to recruit from outside of Europe, it is good to see the Home Affairs Select Committee taking a more common-sense approach. The Committee has rightly identified key areas of concern that need addressing including the impact of current and future changes of immigration policy on SMEs and addressing acute skills shortages in industries such as engineering.

“Manufacturers are committed to building a pipeline of talent in their industry with continued plans to recruit apprentices and graduates. But they are not always replacing like with highly-skilled and experienced engineers increasingly in demand. Employers must always be able to recruit the best person for the job from across the globe."

EEF’s submission to the Home Affairs Select Committee can be found here.

According to EEF data: 

  • 25% of manufacturers use Intra-Company Transfers (ICTs) and 11% specifically recruit employees from outside of Europe to find the skills they need

  • Only 6% of small manufacturers recruit from outside of Europe compared to 25% of larger firms

  • 44% of manufacturers have had difficulties obtaining a visa for non-EEA graduate and 41% have had difficulties obtaining a sponsorship licence

  • 66% of manufacturers plan to recruit an engineering apprentice in the next 12 months and 66% plan to recruit an engineering graduate in the next 3 years

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