Theresa May: Low-skilled immigration to be reduced after Brexit

Theresa May will outline plans for immigration after Brexit (PA) Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

High-skilled workers will be given priority over those who head to the UK for low-paid jobs under new immigration rules after Brexit, Theresa May has said.

The Prime Minister confirmed that European Union countries will be treated the same as those across the rest of the world when the new system is introduced after the Cabinet agreed the move last month.

Tourists and visitors making short trips to the UK from low-risk countries would be dealt with swiftly through electronic visa checks.

Mrs May said the long-awaited Tory immigration plans would be fair for “ordinary working people”.

She added the new system will bring down low skilled immigration while training up British people to fill available roles.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid is preparing to set out the immigration blueprint in a speech to the Conservative party conference.

He told Tory grassroots at a meeting on the fringes on Monday that he wanted an open system that allowed Britain to attract the best talent from across the globe.

Home secretary Sajid Javid will set out the Tory immigration blueprint. Credit: PA

It comes after the Migration Advisory Committee published a Government-commissioned report last month.

The committee said that if immigration is not part of the negotiations with the EU and the UK is deciding its future system in isolation there should be no preference given to citizens from the European Economic Area (EEA).

The bloc includes the present 28 EU countries, as well as Iceland, Norway and Lichtenstein.

Ministers will publish a white paper setting out details of how the new system will work in the coming weeks ahead of an Immigration Bill next year.

Some visitors from certain countries would be fast tracked through e-gates. Credit: PA

So-called fly-in, fly-out visitors on short trips from certain countries would be fast tracked through e-gates.

Security and criminal records checks would be carried out ahead of landing under the proposals.

Workers wanting to stay for longer periods would need to earn a minimum amount to ensure they were not competing for low-skilled jobs that could be filled from within the UK.

Successful applicants would be able to bring immediate family into the UK on condition of sponsorship by their future employers.

Mr Javid said EU free movement would end under the plans.

He told the Daily Mail: “If you want to come to our country and contribute, great.

“But in exchange, we expect you to live by our British values and respect our values.”