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Immigration Bill

Part of Bills Presented – in the House of Commons at 2:06 pm on 13th October 2015.

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Photo of Theresa May Theresa May The Secretary of State for the Home Department 2:06 pm, 13th October 2015

I am going to make some progress.

Through this Bill we will legislate to ensure that that becomes a reality. Today we have published a consultation on the code of practice that public bodies will have to comply with, and a copy has been placed in the Library of the House.

Part 8 establishes a new immigration skills charge for businesses bringing workers into the country. Currently, many businesses are hiring workers from overseas, rather than taking the long-term decision to train our workforce here at home. We need to discourage a default position of looking overseas to fill the skills gap, and the Bill will remedy that by introducing a charge for employers recruiting from outside the European economic area, which will encourage businesses to source skilled labour from the domestic workforce. The funds raised from the charge will contribute to training domestic workers and, in particular, to funding apprenticeships.

Fixing the immigration system cannot be done overnight. Despite the positive progress that has been made over the past five years, the system we inherited was riddled with problems. We must act now to stop rogue landlords and people smugglers exploiting vulnerable people, to protect our public services from abuse and to ensure that people with no right to be in this country are not allowed to extend their stay. This Bill will build on the progress made through the 2014 Act, ensuring greater fairness for British citizens and legitimate migrants, and making sure that the law comes down firmly on the side of those who abide by our laws and play by the rules. I commend the Bill to the House.