South African scientists, academics, and technology experts targeted under new UK visa

The recent slowdown in migration to the UK from the EU, together with new relaxed visa measures will hopefully create exciting opportunities for non-EU nationals, to live and work in the UK.

This is according to immigration consultants Breytenbachs, which said that one such new visa opportunity is the UKRI Science, Research and Academia Scheme.

The scheme opened on 6 July 2018 and allows scientists, researchers, and academics from outside the EEA to come to the UK for up to two years.

“The aim of this new visa scheme is to encourage the ongoing growth of the research sector in the UK,” Breytenbachs said.

“The UK Government hopes that the new research visa scheme will make it easier for international researchers to train and work in the UK.”

How it works

This new visa route falls under the Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange (GAE)) immigration route, said Breytenbachs.

“The UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will operate the scheme. They will in conjunction with twelve other approved research organisations directly sponsor highly skilled individuals to work and train in the UK.

“The UKRI will be the scheme owner and will monitor all sponsor organisations. The sponsor organisations in return will require individual Tier 5 sponsor licenses.”

According to Breytenbachs, ‘sponsored researchers’ may include academics, researchers, scientists, research engineers and other skilled research technology specialists.

“The sponsored researchers will be allowed to give lectures as long as it does not amount to a formal teaching post. They may act as examiners, undertake skills development or knowledge transfers, undertake a period of work-based training/work experience/internship/placement or work on research collaborations,” it said.

Read: 13 awesome countries South Africans can visit visa-free right now

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South African scientists, academics, and technology experts targeted under new UK visa