Published: 18th November 2020
We want Indian students to choose the United Kingdom for higher studies: UK Immigration Minister Kevin Foster
In Summer 2021, the UK will be introducing the Graduate Route, a new post-study work visa that will allow eligible students two years (or three years for PhD students) to stay back
The United Kingdom minister responsible for visas and immigration has encouraged even more students from India to choose the UK as a place to study as they mark International Students' Day on November 17. Kevin Foster MP, Minister for Future Borders and Immigration, used the annual celebration of international students to send a clear message that the UK is open to students. Highlighting visa flexibility after the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the new Student Route, he specified more reasons to continue choosing the UK for pursuing higher studies.
Last year, over 48,000 students from India were granted a UK student visa – a 121 per cent increase on the previous year. In addition, 99 per cent of Indian students were successful in receiving a student visa – showing that the vast majority of UK student visa applicants are granted.
In addition, the UK’s new Student Route promises to make it even more streamlined and convenient for Indian students, with benefits such as applying up to six months in advance, and additional opportunities to extend student visas from the UK.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UK was among the first countries to introduce visa flexibility for students, including permitting remote study for the whole 2020-21 academic year and replacing thousands of expired visas free of charge so Indian students could still travel.
Furthermore, in Summer 2021, the country will be introducing the Graduate Route, a new post-study work visa that will allow eligible students two years (or three years for PhD students) to stay back after they graduate to work, or look for work in the UK.
Kevin Foster MP, Minister for Future Borders and Immigration, said: "Indian students have always been a huge part of our community – and we look forward to welcoming more to our world-leading universities. Put simply, we want the best and brightest to study in the UK, which is why we have made it easier to apply. The UK will always value and welcome international students, and whether now or in the future, we want Indian students to choose the UK as the place to fulfil their potential."
The Student Route and Graduate Route are part of the UK’s new points-based system, the new system of visas and immigration that the UK is opening in January 2021. This will create a fairer, clearer system, where what matters is the skills an individual has rather than their nationality.
Health precautions across the visa system: In order to ensure a safe environment for customers and employees, VFS Global in India has established standardised protective measures to be followed across all its UK Visa Application Centres, have also implemented a mandatory appointment system and are maintaining physical distancing measures. Additionally, staff also carry out preventive measures such as disinfecting high-contact surfaces, body temperature screenings, use of hand sanitisers, etc.
On-Demand Mobile Visa to apply for a visa at your doorstep: All visa customers, including students, can also avail of the optional On-Demand Mobile Visa service that enables them to submit their visa application and enrol biometrics from the comfort and safety of their home. Once a visa decision is reached, passports can be couriered to the customer’s home. Customers in India can visit https://www.vfsglobal.co.uk/