Foreign investors interested in setting up a business in the UK can expect help and better treatment from the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, who announced that funds from the latest UK Budget will be allocated to the Department for International Trade (DfT) to help foreign investors with their Tier 1 investor visa applications.
The help from the UK government will enable the process of the application to become quicker.
The move comes as Britain prepares for life outside the European Union, with the government set to pump £5 billion into exporting. The Chancellor will hand over the funds to UK Export Finance, the Government’s export credit agency that provides loans to overseas buyers of British goods and services.
The Johnson government is on a mission to push the attractiveness of Britain for the world’s brightest and best students and skilled workers. The new UK visa and immigration system, set to launch on 1 January 2021, has been set up strictly to target this particular global talent.
The news that some funds from the UK Budget will be directed to the DfT to support the visa applications of foreign investors, comes as Home Office data revealed that Tier 1 investor visa applications among BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, China and India) have nearly doubled since 2015.
239 Tier 1 investor visa applications were made from BRIC countries in 2019, compared to 129 in 2015, with BRIC applications in 2019 representing 64% of the global aggregate.
It’s certainly clear that the factors that are driving growing BRIC countries in future investments, specifically Chinese interest in UK residential property as it shows no signs of diminishing. This includes the weakness of sterling, the increasing numbers of Chinese students attending British universities, the desire for overseas investment, China’s post- virus economic recovery, and a sharp rise in High Net Worth Individual (HNWI) Chinese expats, which are all boosting demand significantly.
Following an overhaul of the Tier 1 investor visa rules, it seems that interest in UK investment among foreign investors will continue to rise. So the news that visa applications will be supported by the DfT could spark a further increase in UK investor visa applications in the future.
Chinese HNWIs are increasingly drawn to making strategic investment in the UK, using property to build diversified financial portfolios. London is now the favoured overseas destination for securing long-term financial return, with residential property on the list of popular options for when the easing of lockdowns come around.
The popularity of the UK is again driven by Trump’s behaviour that has caused a steep decline in US property sales to Chinese nationals. According to China’s biggest international property finding service, Juwai, there has been a year-on-year first quarter fall in sales of 36%, even though Chinese buyers still spent $13.4 billion on residential property in March alone.
As the pandemic eases and life will begin to come back to a somewhat normal way, queries into the Tier 1 Investor visa programme will start to rise. Notwithstanding the human, political and economic fallout of the pandemic, interest in investor visas has not waned. If you need help or advice with a Tier 1 Investor Visa query do contact us today. We can help you to decide whether coming to the UK is the right step for you. If it is, we can give you the most appropriate and up-to-date information on making your application and can give you help and advice on all facets of making your future move.