ABOUT United Kingdom

About the UK

Great Britain, the dominant industrial and maritime power of the 19th century, played a leading role in developing parliamentary democracy and in advancing literature and science. At its zenith, the British Empire stretched over one-fourth of the earth's surface. The first half of the 20th century saw the UK's strength seriously depleted in two World Wars. The second half witnessed the dismantling of the Empire and the UK rebuilding itself into a modern and prosperous European nation. The UK currently is weighing the degree of its integration with continental Europe. A member of the EU, it chose to remain outside of the EMU for the time being. Constitutional reform is also a significant issue in the UK. Regional assemblies with varying degrees of power opened in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland in 1999.
The UK, a leading trading power and financial center, deploys an essentially capitalistic economy, one of the quartet of trillion dollar economies of Western Europe. Over the past two decades the government has greatly reduced public ownership and contained the growth of social welfare programs. Agriculture is intensive, highly mechanized, and efficient by European standards, producing about 60% of food needs with only 1% of the labor force.
The UK has large coal, natural gas, and oil reserves; primary energy production accounts for 10% of GDP, one of the highest shares of any industrial nation. Services, particularly banking, insurance, and business services, account by far for the largest proportion of GDP while industry continues to decline in importance. London is the place to start. Nowhere in the country can match the scope and innovation of the metropolis, a colossal, frenetic city, perhaps not as immediately attractive as its European counterparts, but with so much variety that the only obstacle to a great time is the shockingly high cost of everything. It's here that you'll find Britain's best spread of nightlife, cultural events, museums, galleries, pubs and restaurants. The other large cities, such as Birmingham, Newcastle, Leeds or Liverpool each have their strengths: Birmingham has a resurgent arts scene, for example, while people travel for miles to sample Newcastle's nightlife. These days Manchester can match the capital for glamour in cafes and clubs, and also boasts the inimitable draw of the world's best-known football team.
In terms of the number of tourists they attract, the biggest occasions in the English calendar are the rituals that have associations with the ruling classes - from the courtly pageant of the Trooping of the Colour to the annual rowing race between Oxford and Cambridge universities. In Scotland many visitors home straight in on bagpipes, ceilidhs and Highland Games; such anachronisms certainly reflect the endemic British taste for nostalgia, but to gauge the spirit of the nation you should sample a wider range of events. London's large-scale festivals range from the riotous street party of the Notting Hill Carnival to the Promenade concerts, Europe's most egalitarian high-class music season, while the Edinburgh Festival and Welsh National Eisteddfod are vast cultural jamborees that have attained international status. Every major town in Britain has its own local arts festival, the best of which, along with various other local fairs and commemorative shows, are mentioned in the guide; we've listed the very biggest ones.

Types of Visas

• Work Visas
• Tier 2 - Work Visa
• Tier 4 – Work Visa
• Tier 5 – Work Visa
• Invest Visa

UK Tier 2 General Visa for Skilled Workers
The Tier 2 General visa is intended for skilled workers from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) to come to the UK and perform a role for a UK employer where that employer has been unable to find suitable people within the EEA.
There are limits on the number of Tier 2 General visas that can be sponsored each month except where the role is considered to be in a skills shortage area, where the salary is over a certain amount or where the employee is already in the UK with a qualifying visa.

General Requirements
In order to qualify for a Tier 2 General visa you must meet the following minimum requirements:

Certificate of Sponsorship
Have a suitable offer of employment from an employer holding a valid Sponsor Licence and be in possession of a valid Certificate of Sponsorship issued by the employer.

English Language
You must be able to communicate effectively in English. You can meet this requirement by being a Citizen of certain English-speaking countries, holding a suitable degree-level qualification that was taught in English or holding a qualifying English Language test to the required standard.

It is important that you can support yourself financially in the UK and you will therefore need to demonstrate this by showing that you have the required minimum amount of savings available to you at all times for the 3-month period prior to applying for your visa. This requirement can also be met by your employer sponsoring confirming that they will maintain and accommodate you on your Certificate of Sponsorship. Some applicants will not need to meet this requirement and primarily this will be those who are already in the UK with specific valid visa status.

Investor Visa
The Tier 1 investor category is designed to allow high net worth individuals to make a substanial financial investment in the United Kingdom.
Unlike work permits (Tier 2 Visa), you do not need a job offer to apply under the investor category. When you apply you are awarded points based on your ability to invest £2,000,000 in the United Kingdom.
If you cannot qualify for this visa then you might consider the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa.

Who can apply for the Tier 1 Investor Visa?
You can apply under the investor category now if you are:
• In the United Kingdom and want to make an initial application as an investor (known as switching)
• Already in the United Kingdom as a tier 1 investor or as an investor under the former category, and want to extend your permission to stay within the tier 1 investor category
• Applying for permission to enter the United Kingdom (known as 'entry clearance') under the investor category.

How do I qualify for the Tier 1 Investor Visa?
To apply under Tier 1 of the points-based system and be accepted into the investor category, you must have access to £2,000,000 that is disposable in the UK and in a regulated financial institution.

Who can apply?
You can apply if you are a not a national of the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and want to enter or stay in the United Kingdom under the investor category.

You can apply if you are:
• in the United Kingdom and want to make an initial application for the investor category
• already in the United Kingdom under the former investor category and want to extend your permission to stay within the tier 1 investor category
• already in the United Kingdom in the tier 1 investor category and want to extend your permission to stay in your existing category
• applying from outside the United Kingdom for permission to enter (known as 'entry clearance') in the investor category.