The government has announced that the number of potential posts open to skilled migrant workers will be reduced by around 270,000.
Eight occupations have been cut from the shortage occupation list meaning that the number of jobs available to migrants will reduce from 500,000 to around 230,000.
The shortage list covers occupations which are hard to fill with UK or EU workers.
Immigration minister Damian Green said: ‘These changes to the shortage occupation list will ensure that only skilled workers are coming to the UK through Tier 2 of the points-based system.
‘It will allow firms to bring in people with necessary skills without migrants becoming the first resort to fill a wide range of available jobs.
‘This government is also determined to get people back to work and provide business with the skills they need from the British workforce – reducing the need for migrants at the same time as we reduce their number.’
New rules from next month
The government is also removing 71 professions from the list of 192 approved jobs available under the skilled job route of the points-based system.
The remaining jobs will need to be advertised for four weeks and be offered to resident workers before they can be offered to non-EU workers.
This is part of new rules to be introduced in April which say that anyone wishing to enter the UK under this skilled route must be doing a graduate level job.
It means occupations such as meat trimmers and senior care workers will no longer be open to non-EU workers.
Today’s decision on shortage occupations and graduate level jobs follows recommendations by the Migration Advisory Committee’s (MAC).
The government has now commissioned the MAC to review shortages across the entire labour market to see if the list can be cut further.