New Telegraph

Only PhD Students Eligible To Bring Dependants To UK – Envoy

In a significant policy shift, the United Kingdom (UK) has said that only international students pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) will be eligible to bring dependants into the country.

This was disclosed by the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery, during an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Sunday.

Speaking on the development, Montgomery said the decision was to address “unsustainable pressures” placed on the universities and social services due to the increasing number of dependants, hence undergraduate or short-term master’s degree students are not beneficiaries.

“The decision to restrict dependants for students in higher education aims to address the unsustainable pressures placed on universities due to the surge in dependant numbers,” Montgomery explained.

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He highlighted the strains on accommodation, medical services provided by the National Health Service (NHS), and schooling for dependants as key concerns that prompted the change.

According to Montgomery, the policy, which was introduced earlier this year, specifically targets students pursuing short-term degrees. “Those coming to the UK for an undergraduate degree or a short-term master’s degree will find the rules have changed,” he said.

However, the High Commissioner clarified that the policy does not affect all categories of international students.

“Individuals pursuing long-term research degrees, like a PhD, can still bring their dependants. This change was necessary to maintain the sustainability of our large higher education sector, which spans many towns across the country,” Montgomery added.

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