Home Secretary Priti Patel announced today that the UK has scrapped the ‘golden visa’ scheme for wealthy foreign investors from all Nationalities.
Going forward all new applicants from all nationalities will no longer be able to apply for the tier 1 investor visa.
The Home Office said
“ with immediate effect”, “given rise to security concerns, including people acquiring their wealth illegitimately and being associated with wider corruption”.
The visa system was launched in 2008 and part of the requirement was that applicants must have at least £2 million in investment funds and have a UK bank account.
The announcement to scrape the visa scheme comes amid concerns about Moscow’s influence in the UK as tensions continue about a potential Russian invasion of Ukraine.
A report published by the Foreign Affairs Committee accused ministers of risking national security by “turning a blind eye” to the Russian “dirty money” flowing through the City of London.
Ms Patel said:
“I have zero tolerance for abuse of our immigration system. Under my New Plan for Immigration, I want to ensure the British people have confidence in the system, including stopping corrupt elites who threaten our national security and push dirty money around our cities.
“Closing this route is just the start of our renewed crackdown on fraud and illicit finance. We will be publishing a fraud action plan, while the forthcoming Economic Crime Bill will crack down on people abusing our financial institutions and better protect the taxpayer.”