Key Takeaways from the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) 2022 Report: What You Need to Know About Visas Going into 2023

Every year, the Migration Advisory Committee releases a report informing Parliament and the public on the work they have completed within the year and how they have used resources. This report also makes informed suggestions for the coming year regarding the immigration system.

From this detailed report, we can see the following:
• We may see a rise in student visa applications. This could impact your approval time.
• We may see a reduction in worker-based visa applications. This could impact your approval time.
• You may be able to switch employers in their move to protect migrants from exploitation, giving you more freedom.

During their findings, it was uncovered that Net Migration had risen from 331,000 in 2021 to 504,000 in 2022. This increase can be mostly due to the introduction of new visa routes for Ukraine and Hong Kong citizens, and it is expected to decrease in the following year.

There has also been a sharp rise in the number of international students entering the UK, with MAC highlighting the benefits to the UK that International students bring.

As part of evaluating the Adult Social Care Sector in April, MAC recommends that social care workers continue to meet the eligibility criteria for a Health and Care Worker visa. They have also suggested that the government needs to make changes to allow for a simpler application process for social care employers and migrants.

However, their main recommendation regarding those coming in on a Health and Care Worker visa was an increase in pay, suggesting to the government that it should be at least a minimum of £1 above the National Living Wage.

In regard to worker-based visas, these routes are designed to be flexible depending on the changes in the economy. MAC predicts that the labour market will weaken in the coming months, resulting in a reduction in worker visa applications.

MAC works to protect migrants, which is why another focus of their report is the exploitation of migrant workers.

Following investigations, they made several recommendations to the government in order to combat this:
· Migrants are allowed to switch employers.
· Live-in workers should be sponsored by an umbrella body rather than by an individual.
· English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) access and employment for asylum seekers to reduce reliance on the informal labour market.
The rest of the report also covers more on exploitation, the labour market and immigration and geographic analysis.

If you are looking to apply for a visa in 2023, our team of dedicated immigration experts help find the best possible route for your needs.