IT consultants are claiming victory after persuading the Government to end measures they believe led to their jobs being poached by foreign workers.
The Home Office included IT specialists on a list of occupations suffering from skills shortages and allowed companies to import cheap foreign workers using fast-track visas.
But according to the Professional Contractors Group (PCG) some companies, including big household names, ended contracts for UK workers in order to use the scheme to employ cheaper workers from India.
Freelancers in the UK said they were finding it increasingly difficult to secure new contracts, which suggested there was no skills shortage.
The PCG collected evidence from its members and presented it to the Home Office.
After a series of discussions the Government has agreed to remove all IT jobs from its skills shortage list, and decreed that all IT work permit applications must show that the job has been advertised in either a national newspaper or relevant trade journal.
The situation will be reviewed again in three months.
"This is excellent news," said Jane Akshar, chairman of the PCG. "It demonstrates how we have been able to work with the Government and the other members of the Skills Sector Panel to show clearly that these skills were not in short supply in the UK."
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