A newly launched think tank researching policies for accepting more foreign workers said Monday that as a condition for new visa statuses currently being discussed in the Diet, the government should require prospective applicants to have a college degree.

The Research Institute for Embracement of Global Human Resources said Japan is still an attractive destination for college graduates in emerging countries, even for blue-collar jobs.

People with lower educational and economic backgrounds in such nations tend to be slower to learn Japanese, and their overall level of Japanese language skills tends to be poorer than that of college graduates, said Yohei Shibasaki, who heads the think tank that was established last week.