On 28 February 2023, the India Young Professionals Scheme opened in the UK. This scheme enables Indian nationals between 18 and 30 to come to the UK for up to two years. It is similar to the established ‘Youth Mobility Scheme’, which exists in eleven countries. However, the difference is that young Indian applicants must prove they have an undergraduate degree or three years of work experience.
To be eligible for the scheme, candidates must:
If the applicants do not have a degree, they can instead show that they have a minimum of three years’ work experience in a professional role equivalent to the jobs listed as Skilled Occupations for the Skilled Worker visa. They must provide specific proof they have done this work.
Candidates must enter a ‘ballot’, the first of which has already closed. Only 2,400 places were available and the lucky winners were randomly picked. After the ballot closes, it will take two weeks to hear if they have been successful. The next ballot is expected to take place in July.
The lucky winners of the ballot can then apply for a visa to enter the UK through the India Young Professional Scheme. They must do this within 30 days of the ballot decision and then travel to the UK within six months of applying for the visa.
There is an application fee of £259 and an Immigration Health Surcharge of £940 to cover the two years. Once they have arrived in the UK, an Indian Young Professional can study and work in most jobs, or they can become self-employed and set up a company. This is permitted as long as the premises are rented, the equipment is not worth more than £5,000, and there are no employees. At the end of the two years, there is no option to extend the visa. However, there is the option to ‘switch’ to, for example, the Skilled Worker route.
Please contact our team if you have any queries about the India Young Professionals Scheme and would like advice or support.