Liz Truss is facing her first cabinet row as she prepares to increase immigration to boost economic growth.
The prime minister is pushing for wide-ranging reform of Britain’s visa system to tackle acute labour shortages and attract the best talent from across the world.
In the coming weeks she intends to raise the cap on seasonal agricultural workers and make changes to the shortage occupations list, which will allow key sectors to recruit more overseas staff.
Truss has told colleagues that she is keen to recruit overseas broadband engineers to support the government’s pledge to make full-fibre broadband available to 85 per cent of UK homes by 2025. It has also been suggested that she could ease the English-language requirement in some sectors to enable more foreign workers to qualify for visas.
…Jacob Rees-Mogg, the business secretary, has told colleagues he would support the changes only if they were shown to increase GDP per capita.
Here is the Times of London (gated) article. Truss has a very definite plan to boost both high-skill immigration and building in Britain, perhaps the two best policies for boosting growth. And yet the silence from many of those who ought to approve has been deafening. To be clear, it remains an open question whether Truss will be able to push through the relevant policies — but at least she is trying!