Election Promises and New Occupational Quota’s

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Interesting times ahead, with Bill Shorten announcing he’ll get tougher on 457 visa applications if elected. Like it wasn’t tough already!

Having spent the past 2 years working with Migration agents and lawyers by honing Labour Market Testing and Genuine Position reports, we know it certainly hasn’t gotten any easier. Fortunately, it would seem changes to the new quotas are arbitary.

Not that it’s easy to tell. A visit to the DIBP website requires a certain kind of stamina! There have been some changes to occupations considered in short supply, but these changes need to be considered in context.

For example, while the quota for Accountants has increased from 2525 to 4777 places, it is hard to say how many actual places are going to be available, as the DIBP have now merged general skilled migration (points tested visas) and employer-sponsored visas into the equation. Potentially, the pass mark might fall due to the larger quota, but that may just be wishful thinking.

The quota for most Engineering positions has been reduced, but in all likelihood such change will have little effect as the quotas for Engineers in previous years were largely unmet. In any case, the few that we did handle, went through quite smoothly. Possibly Computer network professionals may face higher point scores due to a significant reduction of over 500 places. Again, just guessing!

Although other occupations received significant increases and decreases, any change in quota is likely to have minimal impact. So much depends on the number of invitations to apply for residence (approved in the previous immigration year). Sometimes other barriers may be more important. eg. registration and compliance issues, experience required, etc.

If you’re feeling inspired, send your clients the link to check it out. My prediction, we are all going to be as busy as ever!

Disclaimer: Though I take a special interest in each of my clients cases, I am not qualified to advise on such matters. I always insist that my clients speak to a qualified Immigration Lawyer or Migration Agent (MARA). Please contact me if you would like further information on any of the services we provide.

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About the Author:

Jan Macalister is the Director of Labour Market and has been working in the HR field for over 20 years. She holds an MBA and Bachelor of Education.
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