Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made headlines lastweek after announcing skilled 457 visas will be replacedwith an alternative that will see him “put jobs first” and “Australians first”.
The shock decision came on Tuesday via Facebook, whereTurnbull claimed the new system will hone in on “genuine skills shortages” andwould include tougher criteria like compulsory work experience, strong Englishproficiency and a criminal record check.
At the present time, there are 95,758 people using a 457visa in Australia, with the greatest proportion from India (24.6 per cent),followed by the United Kingdom (19.5 per cent) and China (5.8 per cent).
To make this information more digestible, the team atStudies in Australia has come up with some fast facts about the alterations tothe 457 visa.
What is a 457 visa?
A 457 visa allows a skilled worker from overseas to “travelto Australia to work in their nominated occupation for their approved sponsorfor up to four years.” The visa holder must be sponsored by an Australianbusiness, which in turn has to ensure there isn’t an Australian worker whocould fill the role.
How is it beingchanged?
The 457 visa will be replaced by the Temporary SkillShortage Visa, available in two- and four-year programs. While there are currently over 650 jobs listed for 457 holders, this will be reduced by 200when the new system comes into operation.
The criteria for applicants will also change, with tougherrestrictions including:
- Greater English proficiency
- Police and criminal record check
- Mandatory two years of work experience
- Compulsory labour market testing
Sponsoring foreign workers will be considerably moreexpensive for businesses, costing $1,150 for a two-year visa and $2,400 for thefour-year equivalent (more than double the previous fee).
What about current457 visa holders?
For anybody who holds a 457 visa at the moment, it’s not sobad. A “grandfathering arrangement” will ensure that these individuals will notrisk immediate deportation and will still work on the conditions of the 457visa.
When will it comeinto effect?
The Temporary Skill Shortage Visa will officially launch inMarch 2018, although the constricting of some occupation lists began as earlyas April 19.