House of Lords debate: Lord Bilimoria champions international students and calls for government to change its attitude

22 November 2016

Lord Lucas led a debate on 17 November about the need to improve immigration policy for students in the UK. He was joined by parliamentarians from all sides. All of them spoke enthusiastically about how important international students are to the UK and the benefits they bring.

During the debate Baroness Chakrabati delivered her maiden speech, stating that: “International students are visitors, not migrants. They do not take places from people in the UK; they enrich their learning and their lives.”

Our President Lord Bilimoria echoed Baroness Chakrabati about international students ‘enriching the experience of our domestic students.’  

He continued to call for the government to change its attitude towards international students, highlighting that by refusing to remove international students from net migration targets, the UK is not welcoming students from overseas and ‘driving [them] elsewhere.’  

Interestingly the Home Office Minister of State (Baroness Williams) said in summing up that ‘we do not propose to limit or cap the number of international students coming to the UK’ and this wording was also used by another Home Office Minister in a Westminster Hall debate on international students on Wednesday 16 November.    

You can watch Lord Bilimoria and the full debate at Westminster TV.