Sunday, 24 October, 2021
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UK to offer 10,500 post-Brexit visas to counter growing worker crisis

UK to offer 10,500 post-Brexit visas to counter growing worker crisis

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LONDON: Britain will issue up to 10,500 temporary work visas to lorry drivers and poultry workers to ease chronic staff shortages, the government announced on Saturday, in a U-turn on post-Brexit immigration policy, reports AFP.

The short-term visas, to run from next month until late December, come as ministers grapple with a huge shortfall in drivers and some other key workers that has hit fuel supplies and additional industries.

A tanker drivers shortage has caused large queues at petrol stations in recent days, as people ignore government pleas not to panic-buy fuel after some garages closed due to the lack of deliveries.

The decision to expand the critical worker visa scheme is a reversal by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, whose government had tightened post-Brexit immigration rules insisting that Britain's reliance on foreign labour must end.

It had resisted the move for months, despite an estimated shortage of around 100,000 heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers and warnings from various sectors that supplies would run short.