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Tories roll out red carpet for the rich

Cushy visa options unveiled for millionaires while doctors and nurses turned away at the border

TORY Britain is rolling out the red carpet for super-rich parasites to move here while shutting the door on skilled workers in a Tory scheme that Labour denounced today as “unjustifiable.”

Under a government scheme, wealthy applicants who live outside of the EU can get a Tier 1 “investor’s visa” — providing they spend £2 million to invest in government bonds or a registered company. It also offers them advice on tax havens.

And applicants only have to prove the source of their money if the funds have been held for fewer than three months.

In exchange for another £10,500, people can get the “super premium service” where Home Office staff visit an applicant’s home or office to take biometric information and come to a decision within 24 hours.

With this visa, successful applicants can study and work, except as doctors or dentists, and do not need to meet minimum English language requirements.

The visa is valid for three years and can be extended for another two years, before qualifying for indefinite leave to remain after five.

They can be fast-tracked to settled status after either three years if they invest at least £5 million, or two years if investing at least £10 million.

The obsequious treatment contrasts with the Tory record on encouraging skilled migrants, with reports earlier this year showing that Prime Minister Theresa May had ignored pleas from her own Cabinet to relax arbitrary visa rules that have seen hundreds of doctors turned away after being offered jobs in understaffed hospitals.

Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott told the Star it smacked of double standards and that there was “one law for the rich and another for the poor.”

She said: “There is absolutely no reason to believe that they make better contributors to society because they have millions of pounds, rather than being a nurse, or a doctor, or a social worker.

“It is completely unjustifiable and completely unfair and just typical of this government’s approach to immigration.

“People are not allowed to bring family, however hard they work, but the super wealthy are waved through.”

The guidance also encourages applicants to base themselves in tax havens to reduce their tax liabilities and helpfully tells them that time spent in the havens will count as “continuous period[s] of lawful residence.”

Figures released by the Home Office on Thursday show that 96 investor visas were issued between January and March of this year alone, an increase of 28 per cent from the same period last year.

There were 162,874 work-related visas granted in the year ending in March. There were 5,198 Tier 1 visas granted – an increase of 11 per cent compared with the previous 12 months – while 93,048 people were granted Tier 2 skilled worker visas – a decrease of 1 per cent.

The service is advertised at an immigration consultancy in London that targets Chinese, Russian and Saudi millionaires and billionaires. The company claims that a visa is granted in 99 per cent of the time and usually takes three days to receive it.

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