UK approves liberal visa scheme for Chinese, excludes IndiansLast updated on Nov 22, 2017, 10:18 am
The UK is planning to make permanent a pilot scheme unveiled in January 2016 providing Chinese citizens with easier, longer and cheaper British visas.
However, British Immigration Minister Brandon Lewis has said there's no plan to extend this to Indian citizens.
He said Britain's relationship with China is different compared to India. He said he'd review whether the pilot scheme could apply to India.
Lewis says India is Britain's 'best ally in trade post-Brexit'
Lewis acknowledged that India is among Britain's "best allies in trade post-Brexit" but said the visa scheme to China "is based on a different situation from the situation with us and India."
He said, "we will look at that pilot [scheme], and I will feed back after it has ended and we have a chance to review it."
Lewis says there's no plan to limit international students
On the subject of international students, Lewis said there was no plan to limit the number of foreign students.
He said the number of international students entering Britain has decreased as the government has shut down around 920 fake universities since 2010.
He also said that international students are increasingly complying with visa rules.
Why are the number of Indian students in UK declining
Lewis' statement can be seen in the context of declining Indian students in the UK.
In 2010, the David Cameron government introduced immigration reforms causing the number of Indian students in UK colleges to decline by half.
The post-study work visa, a crucial incentive for Indian students, was also abolished in 2012.
It's believed that the closure of fake universities also facilitated the decline.