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New initiative to reduce permissions for newer migrants

09 January 2017

Ministers are introducing new measures to reduce the number of permissions available to businesses to employ newer migrants. 

This is designed to ensure that migration is more focussed on delivering the greatest social and economic value, while also creating a fairer allocation of permissions across businesses.

Over the next 12 months, large businesses who employ more registered workers than other business in the same sector will have their requirements carefully assessed by the Population Office.

As a result, businesses could be placed into a new “step down” programme to reduce the number of registered staff they employ; or they could be placed into a work permit type scheme requiring them to demonstrate the value of each new registered worker before they are permitted to recruit them.

The Council of Ministers wants to see more productive businesses making more profits and paying higher wages, with migration targeted toward delivering the greatest benefit for islanders. In 2015, 1,900 new private sector jobs were created in Jersey, and in June 2016, private sector employment in the Island was at a record high. This helps us to invest in essential services like health, which by 2019 will receive an extra £40million each year.

The Assistant Chief Minister, Senator Paul Routier MBE said “Managing migration is a real challenge – we want to support business in their recruitment needs and help our economy grow, but Jersey is a small Island so it is right that we target migration to get the most social and economic value we can. This new initiative will help us do that by focusing on those businesses which employ the highest proportion of registered staff.”

He added “We welcome newcomers who bring the skills that Jersey needs - in areas such as construction, financial services, and private education and health care – but we need to do more to limit migration.

“Alongside this, the Council of Ministers will continue to invest in new and decent homes and infrastructure, and in health and education, to ensure that Jersey remains a special place to live.”

In addition to this initiative, Ministers are also exploring other new initiatives to better target migration, including strengthening compliance checks and controls, the practicalities of a robust system of criminal record checks for newer migrants as government becomes increasingly digital.

The Chief Minister, Senator Ian Gorst, said  “The Council of Ministers want Jersey to be one of the best places in the world to live – this means protecting our environment, having best public services we can achieve, and encouraging a more productive economy that benefits all Islanders. We do have much more to do, and this initiative to better focus migration fits absolutely with this vision of Jersey.”

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