Entrepreneurs from overseas who wish to start a business in the UK will be granted a newly-designed startup visa, the home secretary Sajid Javid has announced.
According to the home office, the startup visa will create a “faster and smoother” route for international entrepreneurs looking to set up a business in the UK from Spring 2019.
The visa path, announced at a London Tech Week event this week, will replace the existing route which exclusively accepts graduates in order to encourage a wider pool of entrepreneurs to come to Britain.
Currently, the graduate visa is capped at 2,000 people, with 839 approved applicants in the 12 months from March 2017.
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To be issued with the startup visa, applicants are required to have an endorsement from a university or an approved business sponsor, such as an accelerator.
Commenting on the new visa route, Javid said: “The UK can be proud that we are a leading nation when it comes to tech and innovation, but we want to do more to attract businesses to the UK and our migration system plays a key part in that.
“That’s why I am pleased to announce a new visa for people wanting to start a business in the UK.”
The scheme reflects the government’s hopes of making Britain a globally-trading nation post-Brexit.
Javid added: “This will help to ensure we continue to attract the best global talent and maintain the UK’s position as a world-leading destination for innovation and entrepreneurs.”
The startup visa route was designed in collaboration with the Migration Advisory Committee and Britain’s own tech sector.
International entrepreneurs will be able to apply for the startup visa from Spring 2019. The Home Office is expected to announce more details soon.
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