By Senior Immigration Lawyer, Pamela Pau
Subsequent to her address to the National Press Club, Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil released the draft outline of the government’s migration strategy.
The draft strategy asserts the need to deliver structural reform so that our migration system can play a part in helping manage national challenges including an aging population, declining productivity growth and a complex geostrategic environment.
Aside from the key points discussed in our earlier article on the Minister’s address to the National Press Club, the draft migration strategy also mentions the following proposed changes:
- Reshaping of the Global Talent and Business Innovation & Investment Program visas and creating a simple pathway for migrants who are needed to drive innovation in the economy;
- Simplifying the visa system and making the system more efficient;
- Measures to even up the playing field for small business by exploring a switch to monthly employer fees and charges, rather than a large up-front investment to sponsor a worker;
- Formalising feedback between the migration system and the training and education system, to ensure that skill shortages are addressed in a comprehensive manner;
- Reforming policy settings that contribute to exploitation, including by improving the ability of temporary workers to change employers and enforce their workplace rights, without jeopardising their ability to stay in Australia;
- Improving and streamlining skills recognition to enable more migrants, including secondary visa holders to work in the labour market at a level that is commensurate with their qualifications.
Minister O’Neil indicated that one of the big untapped levers is the capacity of partners of skilled migrants to contribute to the economy. Data suggested that secondary visa holders are not engaging with the labour market to the degree that their qualifications suggest they could, due to the very cumbersome process of having their overseas qualifications recognised.
The Australian Government will consult state and territory governments and key stakeholders including business, unions and civil society from May-June 2023 on its draft migration strategy. It intends to release its final migration strategy later in 2023.
If you wish to book a consultation as an individual to have your potential visa options assessed, or as a business wishing to sponsor an employee, please contact us at [email protected].
Disclaimer: Please note the information contained in this article is current as of 1 May 2023 and is subject to change. The information contained in this article is of a general nature only and does not constitute legal advice. Individuals should not act on the basis of the information contained in this article without first seeking formal immigration law advice.