Hyslop Backs Proposals for new ‘Scottish Visa’
Local Constituency MSP, Fiona Hyslop MSP has backed proposal for a new Scottish Visa to address depopulation and cut skills gaps in West Lothian set to be made worse by Brexit.
This comes following a cross-party report by Holyrood’s Finance Committee found that, without additional powers for the Scottish Parliament, Scottish public spending may be put at risk by demographic changes.
All of Scotland’s population growth for the next 25 years is projected to come from migration. However, new UK Government immigration controls and the end of free movement after Brexit are expected to exacerbate the risk of skills gaps and labour shortages in Scotland. The First Minister has announced plans where migrants who want to live in Scotland could choose to apply for a Scottish Visa, or one of the existing immigration routes offered by the UK Government.
“Without migration, West Lothian could face a demographic crisis that could hammer public services like the NHS. West Lothian has an aging population and so this would leave us with fewer working age taxpayers.
“Brexit and the end of freedom of movement pose a huge risk to our economy and public services. It is vital for West Lothian’s future prosperity that we continue to attract people to live and work here. The valuable contribution that migrants make to our communities and public services must be able to continue.
“These sensible Scottish Government proposals, in line with other regional migration systems such as in Canada and Australia, would give us the ability to create a system which secures our future prosperity. “
Holyrood’s Finance & Constitution Committee warns of strong evidence of a demographic risk to the size of Scottish budget
Migration: Helping Scotland Prosper