The UK issued a total of 2,836,490 visas in 2022, out of which 25 per cent went to India, the highest number issued to any country, British High Commissioner to India Alex Ellis said on Tuesday.

Indian nationals received the highest number of student visas which went up by 73 per cent from 2021. India was also issued 30 per cent of visit visas, which is the largest share compared to any other country, Ellis said, adding that the work visas increased by 130 per cent in the year 2022.

Nearly a quarter of all international students in Britain are from India, and Indian investment into the UK supports 95,000 jobs across the UK.

The UK Immigration Statistics, published in August 2022, showed that nearly 118,000 Indian students received a student visa in the year ending June 2022 -- an 89 per cent increase from the previous year.

India has overtaken China as the largest nationality being issued sponsored Study visas in the UK.

The announcement came even as India and Britain opened their visa application process for students to apply for the new Young Professionals Scheme (YPS) under the India-UK Migration and Mobility partnership.

Launched last month, the scheme allows Indian citizens between 18 and 30 years old to live and work in the UK for up to two years.

Announcing the scheme's opening on Tuesday, Indian High Commissioner to the UK Vikram Doraiswami said: "Under the Young Professionals Scheme, announced about a month ago, young citizens of India and the UK can visit each other for up to two years at a time."

"I am pleased to be able to tell you that the scheme goes live from February 28. We will be launching this simultaneously in Delhi and in London, respectively for Indians to come to the UK and British citizens to go to India," he added.

The UK government announced that 2,400 visas will be made available to eligible Indians under the scheme for which the last date of application is set on March 2 at 2:29 pm (IST).

Source IANS

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