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Yell for heather

Plans to attract international students to Scotland could be realised quite easily, writes David McCollum.

Control over immigration policy was one of the more contentious issues put before the post-referendum Smith Commission on further devolution of powers to the Scottish Parliament, which reported on 27 November. In the end, despite calls from the business, research and education community, the commission did not propose that control over immigration should devolve to Scotland. But it did hint at the possibility of change in a way that has particular significance for universities.

On the final page of the report, in a section entitled “additional issues for consideration”, was the suggestion that the UK and Scottish governments should work together to “explore the possibility of introducing formal schemes to allow international higher education students graduating from Scottish further and higher education institutions to remain in Scotland and contribute to economic activity for a defined period of time”.

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