Australia plans to introduce Fast-Track Visas for Regional Workers - February 12, 2019

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The Australian Federal government is undertaking a new population plan. Additionally, it will offer a fast-track visa for skilled Workers who are enthusiastic to move to the regional areas.  Moreover, it will spend $19.4 million in the next four years for helping the local businesses of regional areas in attracting skilled workers.

Need for skilled migrants

David Coleman, the Immigration Minister said that many regions outside Melbourne Sydney, and Queensland, call out for skilled migrants. The regional initiatives will help local businesses and such communities to attract migrants wherever there is an urgent necessity.

Based on the latest agreements, which are an extension of the Designated Area Migration Agreements, there will be a priority in processing, to the visa applicants that have the sponsorship of employers in designated regions.

Other facts

The Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482) presently takes 74 days for processing as per the Home Affairs Department. Furthermore, other visas can take more than 18 months. The government has an expectation that the applicants who enter Australia based on the new agreements must show a firm commitment to serve in the regional communities.

Terms and conditions

The visa requires people to work in a designated area. There is no provision to work in some other area. The nominated workers need to reapply for seeking a different visa when they are inclined to move. Moreover, they will not be in a position to obtain it and they would not be able to move towards Australia permanent residency.

The Home Affairs Department plans to send officials to these regional areas for discussing opportunities in regional migration with the relevant regional communities/employers and, also know directly regarding the local labor issues they are facing.

The plan permits local councils in recruiting overseas workers. The extension to the DAMA has a similar initiative and targets the Northern Territory.

The challenge of population

The recent skilled migration plan was the result of meetings between the Federal Treasurer and state treasurers. There is a need for working closely to manage population change. Also, there must be a better data sharing mechanism and an understanding of future skills needs. Australia presently has a population of 25 million. Furthermore, the growth in population is at a fast rate, and the government is seeking a solution. In November 2018, PM Morrison expressed regarding reducing permanent migration at 30,000 for addressing the issue of overpopulation.

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