Skilled Foreigners Must Get UK Identity Cards

Business Week, January 6, 2010

New regulations that took effect Wednesday require skilled foreign workers who extend their stay in Britain to obtain identity cards containing biometric data, including finger prints and photographs.

The UK Border Agency rules are part of the extended rollout of a 2008 program that will require all foreign workers who plan to stay in Britain six months or longer to obtain an ID card by April 2011.

The rules apply only to workers from outside the European Economic Area and Switzerland.

British officials say the ID cards for foreign workers will help combat illegal workers and illegal immigration and allow cardholders to establish their identity and immigration status, making it easier for them to access various benefits they are entitled to.

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