The Government must make sure the UK’s migration system is designed to support the economic recovery.

Companies should be able to call on specialist skills from abroad when necessary. Keeping the UK “open for business” is crucial for recovery.

From next April, the Government will introduce an annual cap on non-EU economic migration, which will supplement the existing points-based system. Meanwhile, interim arrangements are in place ahead of the introduction of the permanent cap.

Firms must be able to access the best and brightest talent from around the world. Interim arrangements are understandable to prevent a spike in applications ahead of the permanent cap. But the system is being poorly managed and proving a headache for firms trying to keep on valued foreign members of staff, or recruit specialists from overseas.

The migration system must support, not hamper growth. When the permanent cap is introduced next year, skilled migrants with a job offer should be prioritised.

These workers are relatively small in number, generate taxes and do not place a strain on public services. They will also play a critical role in the recovery by allowing companies to plug domestic skills shortages, resource international projects, and train UK-based staff.

Although CBI members have no ideological opposition to a cap on migration, the inflexibility of the interim arrangements has caused serious problems for many firms by preventing them from extending the stay of evalued members of staff, and recruiting additional specialists from overseas. There must be a review of the interim arrangements to ensure they are not hampering the economy at this crucial time.