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Archive for the ‘Immigration News’ Category

The latest statistics confirm Australia’s net overseas migration (NOM) level is on track to drop by about 20 per cent by the end of the financial year in response to government reforms to temporary and permanent migration and economic conditions, the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans, said today.

Preliminary estimates released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) ‘Social Trends’ series show the level of NOM in 2008 was 301 200 people and fell to 277 700 people in 2009.

‘Based on current visa application numbers, the level of NOM is on track to drop to between 230 000 and 250 000 people by the end of the financial year,’ Senator Evans said.

‘This confirms that record high population growth has been fuelled by growth in temporary long-stay migrants, especially students, as a result of the policies of the previous coalition government.’

Senator Evans said net overseas migration began to climb and get out of control under the previous government, as a result of its decision to open up pathways for temporary residents—particularly students—to remain in Australia permanently.

In response to the ABS report’s findings, Senator Evans said the level of NOM—which includes both permanent migrants and long-term temporary migrants, including students—had peaked and was clearly on the way down.

‘The government is committed to ongoing forward-planning and reform to ensure immigration levels are guided by Australia’s needs and not by the desire of prospective migrants to come to Australia,’ Senator Evans said.

‘Prime Minister Gillard has already articulated her vision for a sustainable population—one that supports our environment and our renewable resources and that is in turn supported by proper resources and infrastructure.’

The government will develop policies to ensure all Australians benefit from our strong and growing economy.’

Source  :  http://www.minister.immi.gov.au/media/media-releases/2010/ce10055.htm

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Business has warned that West Australians could be priced out of the resources boom and interest rates pushed even higher if the Federal Opposition follows through with a promise to slash the number of immigrants.

WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief economist John Nicolaou said the flagged cut would mean the abandonment of major developments by companies unable to find the workers they need to exploit the State’s natural resources.

He was backed by Trade Minister Simon Crean who said cutting immigration now would devastate economies like that of WA and Queensland which were crying out for workers.

The Opposition has signalled cutting the net immigration intake which, when temporary workers and students are taken into account, edged down to 297,000 in the three months to the end of September.

Shadow immigration minister Scott Morrison said forecasts of Australia’s population reaching 36 million by 2050 proved immigration under the Rudd Government was “out of control”.

He said a coalition government would bring immigration levels back to a “sustainable level”.

But Mr Nicolaou said with WA needing 400,000 people over the coming decade to deal with the resources boom, cutting immigration levels could prove economically disastrous to the State.

He said major resource companies would go overseas if they could not get the labour they needed in Australia.

Those that did continue work in WA would have to pay higher wages for their staff, which would then push up costs for the rest of the community.

“I think it’s very short-sighted if they’re looking at cutting immigration, because it’s going to push up costs for everyone through wages going up,” he said.

“We lost investment in the last boom because there were insufficient workers, and we run the risk of doing that again.”

Professor Peter Mc Donald of the Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute also warned that trying to cap immigration levels would have major economic ramifications for people already living in Australia. The Reserve Bank was already lifting interest rates to dampen demand.

“You’re just going to push up wages pressures and that will feed into higher interest rates,” he said.

Mr Crean said the resource States would be disadvantaged if the number of workers was artificially restricted.

“Mining companies generally are saying one of the biggest challenges they face … is the availability of skilled labour,” he said. “People calling for cuts to immigration programs ought to understand how the economy is functioning.” 

Source  :  www.thewest.com.au

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Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard says WA needs more migrants amid claims hundreds of thousands of extra workers are necessary over the next decade to thwart a labour crisis.

Speaking at a Perth business breakfast hosted by _The West Australian _and Murdoch University, Ms Gillard said both interstate and international migration was needed to help fill future job vacancies.

It comes as employer groups warn labour shortages are set to hit within months.

Ms Gillard said WA also needed to better utilise its youth market, which was suffering a 10 per cent unemployment rate.

She blamed the labour problem partly on the booming resources sector which was drawing workers, infrastructure and services away from rest of the economy.

“That’s why we need to properly analyse and assess all claims about the West’s needs in the decade or so ahead, including claims about the need to attract hundreds of thousands of new workers,” she said.

“There’s no doubt more interstate and overseas migrants will be needed, but we need to look also at how we can achieve better results with the assets that are already available and underused.

“With a youth unemployment rate of almost 10 per cent, there is more work to be done to create the pathways that will give these kids a future.”

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry said labour shortages would hit in the second half of this year, with WA needing an extra 400,000 workers in the decade from 2007. Based on current population trends, there would be 150,000 shortfall.

CCI supports strong migration to alleviate the skills shortage, which threatened to curb WA’s economic growth during the last boom.

The WA Group Training Scheme, which last year sacked some apprentices because of reduced work, said there had been a quick economic turnaround and expectations of boom-level demand this year.

Ms Gillard said an expanded training initiative announced yesterday, creating 11,000 advanced level training places nationally, would help address some of the skills shortage.

Ms Gillard, who heads to the Pilbara today to inspect the $43 billion Gorgon project, warned unions not to engage in unlawful industrial action, singling out the construction union’s Kevin Reynolds and Joe McDonald. “We have got no tolerance for people who seek to break the rules and I am well aware there is a concern in this State over the propensity of some individuals to believe they are beyond the law,” she said.

Mr Reynolds said he was not surprised at being singled out by Ms Gillard over unlawful industrial action, claiming the pair had an adverse relationship. He said migration should be a back-up with the focus on training. 

Ms Gillard said an expanded training initiative announced yesterday, creating 11,000 advanced level training places nationally, would help address some of the skills shortage.

Ms Gillard, who heads to the Pilbara today to inspect the $43 billion Gorgon project, warned unions not to engage in unlawful industrial action, singling out the construction union’s Kevin Reynolds and Joe McDonald. “We have got no tolerance for people who seek to break the rules and I am well aware there is a concern in this State over the propensity of some individuals to believe they are beyond the law,” she said.

Mr Reynolds said he was not surprised at being singled out by Ms Gillard over unlawful industrial action, claiming the pair had an adverse relationship. He said migration should be a back-up with the focus on training.

Source  :  www.thewest.com.au

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The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans, today welcomed the final report of the Baird Review on the legislation governing international education.

It is most pleasing to note Mr Baird’s support for the Rudd Government’s changes to the skilled migration program announced on 8 February 2010.

The skilled migration program changes will encourage overseas students to focus on obtaining a quality education from a high quality provider by removing incentives for students to apply for a course simply in the hope of being granted permanent residence.

Under the changes, the wide-ranging migration occupations in demand list was revoked and will be replaced mid-year by a new and more targeted skilled occupations list to be developed by the independent body, Skills Australia.

The new skilled occupations list will be tightly focused on high value skills that will assist in addressing Australia’s future skills needs. It will deliver a mix of skills across the professions and trades in areas such as healthcare, engineering and mining.

International students currently studying in Australia who hold a vocational, higher education or postgraduate student visa will still be able to apply for permanent residence if their occupation is on the new skilled occupations list.

Students currently studying a course in an occupation that is not on the new skilled occupations list will have until the end of 2012 to apply for a temporary skilled graduate visa which will enable them to spend up to 18 months in Australia to acquire work experience and find an Australian employer willing to sponsor them.

It must be remembered that a student visa is just that: a visa to study. It does not give someone an automatic entitlement to permanent residence.

International students should be focused on obtaining a good qualification from a quality education provider in a field in which they want to work. The changes will in no way impact on international students coming to Australia to gain a legitimate qualification and then return home.

Similarly, Australia’s migration program is not and should not be determined by the courses studied by international students.

Australia will continue to welcome international students and provide an opportunity for those who have the necessary qualifications and skills to find an Australian employer willing to sponsor them for a permanent visa.

Source  :  www.immigov.au

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From 1 January 2010, as part of the skills assessment process for certain onshore GSM applicants who nominate a trade occupation, applicants will be required to demonstrate that they are ‘job ready’. This new requirement will be assessed through the Job Ready Program (previously referred to as the JobReady Test). The Job Ready Program has been developed by the relevant assessing authority, Trades Recognition Australia (TRA), in consultation with industry and unions and will include a workplace assessment by a TRA approved assessor.
The new job ready requirement will ensure that people who wish to migrate to Australia as skilled migrants in trade occupations are able to participate in the labour market in the area of their skills and knowledge. Applicants nominating a trade occupation who apply for certain onshore General Skilled Migration (GSM) visas on or after 1 January 2010 will be required to meet the job ready requirement as part of the skills assessment process. This requirement will enhance current skills assessment arrangements for onshore applicants and complement the existing offshore assessment processes.   
Which occupations and visas will be subject to the new job ready requirement?
 
 

Applicants wishing to migrate to Australia under one of the below visa subclasses and in an allowable trade occupation will be required to satisfy the Job Ready Program’s requirements as part of the skills assessment process. This requirement will apply for applications lodged on or after 1 January 2010.
 
 

Visa subclasses
 
 

The following visa subclasses are subject to the job ready requirement:
 
 

  1. Skilled – Independent (Residence) Visa (Subclass 885)
  2. Skilled – Sponsored (Residence) Visa (Subclass 886)
  3. Skilled – Regional Sponsored (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 487)
A list of trade occupations available under the GSM program is available on the department’s website. 

 See: Form 1121i Skilled Occupation List (SOL) and Employer Nomination Scheme Occupation List (ENSOL)

What is the purpose of the job ready requirement?
 
 

A key aim of the GSM program is to provide ‘job ready’ applicants to Australian employers. Job ready migrants are more likely to find employment quickly, which leads to improved settlement outcomes for them.
Assessment through the Job Ready Program ensures that applicants for skilled migration have the skills and knowledge to perform their nominated occupation within the Australian workplace.   
Frequently asked questions
How do I find out if my trade occupation requires me to satisfy the job ready requirement?
 

To determine if your occupation requires you to be assessed under the job ready requirement, that is, the Job Ready Program, you can refer to Form 1121i.
 
 

See: 
Occupations listed as Tradespersons and related workers that are in the Skilled Occupation List (SOL) are required to meet the new requirement. You may also wish to contact the relevant assessing authority for your occupation to determine what is required as part of your skills assessment.  
I lodged my General Skilled Migration (GSM) visa application for permanent migration before 1 January 2010 and have not yet received my skills assessment. Am I required to meet the job ready requirement?
 
 

No. If your application was lodged before 1 January 2010, you are not required to meet the job ready requirement as part of your skills assessment provided your application is for a permanent GSM visa. The requirement applies to applications lodged on or after 1 January 2010 only.
 
 

I am currently on a Subclass 485 visa and have not yet applied for a permanent GSM visa. Will I be required to meet the job ready requirement as I already hold a suitable skills assessment obtained when applying for my Subclass 485 visa?
 
 

If you currently hold a Subclass 485 visa but have not applied for a permanent onshore GSM visa by 1 January 2010, you will be required to obtain a new skills assessment which demonstrates that you are job ready if applicable to your occupation. This will be the case if your trade occupation requires you to provide a skills assessment dated on or after 1 January 2010.
If you are not required to submit a skills assessment dated on or after 1 January 2010 as it is not required for your occupation, you are able to submit an existing skills assessment should you wish to do so.
 

Why do I need to submit a skills assessment dated on after 1 January 2010 if I am required to meet the job ready requirement?
 
 

You will need to provide the department with a skills assessment dated on or after 1 January 2010 if you are required to meet the job ready requirement to ensure your skills have been assessed as ‘job ready’. Skills assessments issued prior to 1 January 2010 have not been assessed against the job ready requirement, while those issued after 1 January 2010 do. 
  
 

 

I am in a trade occupation and applying for an onshore GSM visa (Subclass 487, 885 or 886). Will I be required to meet the job ready requirement from 1 January 2010?
 
 

Yes. If you are nominating a trade occupation, you will need to meet the job ready requirement as part of your skills assessment from 1 January 2010. Applicants who are not applying for a trade occupation will not be required to do so.
 
 

I am applying in a trade occupation through one of the offshore GSM visas. Will I need to satisfy the job ready requirement as part of my skills assessment?
 
 

No. If you are applying for an offshore GSM visa, you will not be required to satisfy the job ready requirement as part of your skills assessment. However, if your occupation is a trade occupation, you will no longer be able to apply to migrate to Australia under the GSM program based on meeting the Australian study requirement. Instead, you must have at least 12 months of work experience in a skilled occupation within the 24 months before you apply in order to qualify for a visa grant.
More information can be found on the department’s website.
 

See: 
How does this affect me making an application for a Subclass 485 visa?
 
 

Applicants for a Subclass 485 visa are unaffected by the introduction of the job ready requirement. Applicants for a Subclass 485 visa will still be required to obtain a skills assessment from the relevant assessing authority before the Subclass 485 visa can be granted. For trade occupations, TRA will still issue skills assessments suitable for applying for a Subclass 485 visa.
 
 

Does this mean my old TRA skills assessment is no longer valid?
 
 

The changes only affect the requirements for the onshore permanent GSM visas in trade occupations. TRA assessments conducted before 1 January 2010 would continue to satisfy the requirements for the onshore lodgement of an application for a Subclass 485 visa, as well as for applications for Subclass 175, 176 and 475 visas. The assessments would also satisfy the department’s requirements for any of the employer sponsored category of visas.
 
 

Where I can find more information regarding the skills assessment process and the Job Ready Program?
 
 

Information regarding the skills assessment process and the Job Ready Program itself should be directed to the relevant assessing authority. For trade occupations, the relevant assessing authority is Trades Recognition Australia.
 
 

See:  Trades Recognition Australia   
Changes to Offshore GSM Applicants Seeking to Meet the Australian Study Requirement from 1 January 2010  

 

 Form 1121i Skilled Occupation List (SOL) and Employer Nomination Scheme Occupation List (ENSOL)  

 

 

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Below are links to new Comlaw information on:

1 Which occupations will require a new skills assessment after 1 January 2010, and

2 Which offshore applicants will need to have worked for 12 of the 24 months before the date of the application in the actual nominated occupation.

http://www.comlaw.gov.au/ComLa…020AF17?OpenDocument

http://www.comlaw.gov.au/ComLa…09143+-+LI+-+JRT.doc

http://www.comlaw.gov.au/ComLa…143+-+ES+-+Final.doc

No need for offshore applicants to obtain a new skills assessment as far as I can see.

Cheers,

George Lombard

__________________
Migration Agent Registration Number 9601056
george[at]austimmigration[dot]com[dot]au
www.austimmigration.com.au

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As all of you have been waiting for the news on changes of migration program rules, the DIAC has today announced the forthcoming changes in the program. It focus, especially on the 175, 176, 475 visa application where a successful skill assessment is a MUST for all applicant regardless of their location. It means the same rules apply for both the on-shore and offshore applicants.

To read more about the changes please follow this link.

The department has also changed their refund policy which applies to all refund applications made after 21 December 2009; those who already applied for a refund prior to this but the case has not yet been finalized are also covered by the same policy. However, the detail of the policy is not available yet. I think if anybody wish a refund should contact the department to make sure whether they are eligible for a refund or not. To read more about the changes please follow this link.

I assume that there are more changes to come in the program, especially in the prioritization and MODL or CSL or whatever they may call it.

Source  : http://www.pomsinoz.com/forum/migration-issues/74743-01-january-2010-changes-migration-program-announced.html

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