Following the publication on 18 September of the Migration Advisory Committee report on the impact of EEA migration in the UK, our Chief Executive Stephen Woodford made the following statement regarding the proposals:

“We welcome aspects of today’s report from the Migration Advisory Committee. We support its recommendations that skilled migrants from anywhere in the world should be able to come to the UK more easily and that there should be no cap on Tier 2 visas. We also welcome the recommendation that the Government reduces the bureaucracy of the system and engages with industry to ensure it is fit for purpose.  The recommendation of a review into how the sponsor system works for SMEs is also a step in the right direction to get the economy firing on all cylinders.

“There are important areas though that the MAC report has not considered. For example, the salary cap on Tier 2 prohibits many opportunities for young talent from overseas to build their career here. It also does not account for temporary movement of talent in and out for work requirements – fly in fly out – which is often critical to deliver fast-moving advertising services that cater for international clients and international territories.

“It is important to remember the UK is the world’s leading international advertising hub and a great British success story, thanks in many ways to the talent based here. International talent attracts international business to the UK, creating more jobs for the domestic workforce and developing our home-grown talent. Our own research, World Class Talent, World Class Advertising, released in late 2017 to help inform the MAC report recommendations, has shown we lead the world for importing and exporting advertising professionals.

“Our openness to talent has been a core part of our development as a world-class hub for advertisers. Amongst this debate about talent, it is vital to remember advertising is a driver of economic growth. Every pound spent on advertising returns six pounds to GDP – that’s more than £130bn a year in total. The industry supports 1 million jobs and we export £5.8bn of advertising services globally, the highest on a per capita basis in the world. For these reasons, and for our future prospects, it is vital the UK is welcoming to global talent as a crucial component of our connection with our trading partners in the EU27, as well as the wider world.”