Last week UK government announced a relaxation of recruitment criteria to allow Commonwealth nationals to apply for jobs in its armed forces to meet a shortage in its ranks, a move that could also benefit Indians.
The decision announced by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) means that people from Commonwealth countries – including India, Australia, Kenya, Fiji and Sri Lanka – will be considered for roles, even if they have never lived in Britain.
If you are considering joining now drop to the bottom and have a look at the Commonwealth Recruitment Guide.
The Commonwealth is an association of 53 independent states that are mostly former territories of the British Empire.
The MoD laid out the proposals in a written ministerial statement (WMS) before Parliament, which involves a waiver of the current requirement of a minimum of five-year residency in the UK for applying to join the country’s Army, Navy or Air Force.
This would open up the forces to recruits who have been based in countries like India, Australia, Canada and Kenya and meet the necessary recruitment criteria for the service and role they wish to join.
We have now decided to remove the five-year UK residency criterion for Commonwealth citizens and increase recruitment to 1,350 across the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Air Force (RAF), the MoD statement reads.
This limited waiver has now been widened, with the RAF and Navy beginning recruitment of Commonwealth applicants right away and the Army to accept such applications from early 2019. Applications from citizens of countries outside the Commonwealth will not be accepted.
Under the recruitment drive the Army wants to lure 1,000 personnel, while the Royal Navy is hoping for 300 more people and the RAF expects to take on 50.
New spots in the Royal Navy and RAF are open immediately while the Army will begin taking applications early next year.
Visit the Royal Navy Recruitment page here
The Commonwealth Recruitment Guide can be found here
The WMS – HLWS1035 can be found here