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The government published a policy statement on 19 February setting out the initial details of its plans for a new UK points-based immigration system from 1 January 2021.

Under the new scheme, EU and non-EU citizens will be treated equally. The government says that it is intended to cater for the most highly skilled workers, skilled workers, students and a range of other specialist work routes, including routes for global leaders and innovators. The changes are significant as they will affect how employers can recruit both EU and non-EU citizens in the UK after 1 January 2021.  Employers can continue to accept passports and national identity cards of EU citizens as evidence of their right to work in the UK until 30 June 2021 (the deadline for application sunder the EU Settlement Scheme).

The government has confirmed that it will not be introducing a general low-skilled or temporary work route into the UK.