Following the reopening of the international borders, the Federal Budget focuses on a range of immigration measures that will support Australia's economic recovery and investment agenda.
It focuses on skilled workers with targeted measures for rural and regional employers including bringing an additional 12,500 workers under the Pacific Australia Labour Mobility scheme and the new Australian Agriculture Visa.
The Government will maintain the 2022–23 permanent Migration Program planning level at 160,000, with an increase in skill stream places to 109,900 (around 70% of the permanent Migration Program).
The country caps for Work and Holiday visas will be increased by 30% (with overall places available at around 11,000).
It will re-incentivise international students and Working Holiday Maker Visa holders with refunds and waivers of Visa application charges for those who arrive in Australia in the first quarter.
There are some 70 changes to migration Visa settings in response to COVID-19 and to support Australia's labour market and economy. These include extensions of Visa validity periods, the removal of work restrictions and Visa application charge waivers or refunds.
The Government will increase funding over two years to continue the Global Business, Talent and Investment Taskforce, renamed as Global Australia Taskforce, to attract international talent and investment.
This year's Federal Budget commences what needs to be a long-term strategy to address skill shortages while investing in measures to expand and upskill the local workforce.
“This year’s Federal Budget commences what needs to be a long–term strategy to address skill shortages while investing in measures to expand and upskill the local workforce.”
Global and National Immigration Leader, Legal Principal