December 28, 2009
Nearly 3/4 of visas under the Points Based System are given to students1½ million students admitted in just 8 years
No checks on how many leave UK
Roll of Immigration Officers severely undermind
A new report out today reveals that student visas are a massive loophole in our border controls. Nearly three quarters of visas issued under the Points Based System are given not to workers but students, under a system that is easily abused, badly administered and complex. Far from being “tough and flexible” as the Government claims, the new Points Based System has made a bad situation much worse.
The report by Migrationwatch shows that:
nearly 1½ million student visas have been issued in the last 8 years. Students also account for a huge number of applications for extension. For example, between 2004 and 2007 they averaged about 140,000 per year 
Commenting, Sir Andrew Green, Chairman of Migrationwatch said:
‘Once again the Government’s claim that their Points Based System is effective in managing immigration is shown to be worthless. Our report shows that nearly three quarters of the PBS is made up of student visas which are already a gaping hole in our immigration system.
‘We now issue 370,000 student visas a year – almost the entire population of Bristol or Manchester - yet hardly any of the applicants ever see hide nor hair of an Immigration Officer. Student visas have long been a massive loophole in immigration control. The PBS makes a bad situation considerably worse; it is now clear that it has feet of clay,’ he said.
 Control of Immigration; Statistical Summary 1999-2007, Table 4.2