Hospitality will be hammered by the government’s new immigration plan according to data released by Fourth.

The new plan, revealed yesterday by home secretary Priti Patel, will see the salary threshold for skilled workers entering the UK lowered from £30,000 to £25,600.

As 42% of employees in the hospitality industry come from the EU and are paid an average full-time salary of £18,400 (or average of £8.44 per hour) and 11% from the Rest of the World earn an average equivalent full-time salary of £19,500, the legislation will have a significant impact on the sector.

Restaurants will be hit hardest, as 60% of front-of-house staff come from overseas. Back-of-house will be hit harder, as 75% of this sector is made up of overseas workers.

The QSR sector, which is currently made up of 61% of workers from overseas and pays an average of £9.46 per hour will also be hit, as will pubs and hotels, although they have a lower reliance on foreign workers, with 33% and 40% of overseas workers respectively.

In terms of nationalities most affected, Poland makes up 11% of the UK hospitality workforce followed by Italy (7%), Portugal (6%), Romania (5%) and Spain (4%).

“This latest announcement on immigration brings much cause for concern across all sectors in the hospitality industry. This move will undoubtedly add further fuel to the fire in the industry’s ongoing fight to attract and retain the best employees.

“The announcement comes after the government announced further increases to the NLW in April, which is a double blow for the industry. The already extensive pressure on wages will be further exacerbated by a shrinking pool of workers as the tap of new labour from Europe is turned off, presenting a mountain of rising labour costs for operators to climb.

The new legislation is due to be introduced on 1 January 2021.