471 views

A visa fee for European travel could become reality, admits home secretary

Lynsey Barber
Follow Lynsey
Home secretary Amber Rudd appears on BBC Andrew Marr show
Amber Rudd floated the idea of work permits (Source: BBC)

Brits could face being charged for travelling to Europe via a visa scheme being considered by Brussels the newly installed home secretary Amber Rudd has conceded.

The EU is considering the introduction of a visa system that would force Brits to pay to travel to Europe, it was yesterday revealed, and Rudd today admitted that it would form part of the UK-EU negotiations if that's what Brussels was considering.

Read more: Now there's a "Brexit means Brexit" pressure group (and BoJo is backing it)

"I don’t think it’s particularly desirable, but we don’t rule it out because we have to be allowed a free hand to get the best negotiation," she said, speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show.

"The EU and the Commissioners may be considering issues, alternatives, they will be considering their negotiation with us, just as we are considering it with them. But I’m going to make sure that what we do get is in the best interest of the UK," she added.

The government remains committed to reducing the number of immigrants coming into the UK to tens of thousands after the vote for Brexit and could consider work permits for foreign nationals seeking a job in the UK, it was also revealed

The Conservative's election promise to limit immigration is still a goal, said Rudd, as she also revealed that a work permit system was one potential option for controlling immigration after Prime Minister Theresa May last week ruled out a points system.

The permit system which currently applies to non-EU nationals wanting to come to the UK would be extended to EU citizens who can currently come to the UK as and when they wish.

Read more: This MP wants Article 50 triggered within "weeks"

"We’ve ruled it out because it simply doesn’t work," said Rudd.

"There was a non-EU points system in the past, it was ineffective because basically people could gain the system too effectively. Whether we look at a work permit system or another system is something that my department is looking at closely at the moment," she said.

Related articles