The Australian government has been forced to make many immigration policy changes in the recent past. Many of such changes are to be implemented in 2021.
The scheduled changes will be impacting skilled migrants, international workers, partners as well as aged parents intending to visit Australia or migrate to Australia permanently.
Australia has a New Immigration Minister. Alan Tudge has recently been replaced by Alex Hawke.
|Celling of 160,000 retained for 2020-21 Migration Program, composition changed|
|Family stream visas increased from 47,732 to 77,300|
|Priority to job creators, innovators, and investors|
|15,000 places available under the Global Talent Visa Program|
|Temporary changes to the family visa program|
|The English language requirement for Partner visas has also been changed|
|Business and investment visa streams reduced|
|New penalties for temporary visa holders failing to declare high-risk biosecurity goods|
While the Morrison government has retained the ceiling for the 2020-21 Migration Program at 160,000 places, there has nonetheless been a change in the composition of the same. As per the new plan, there is a greater emphasis on the family stream visas, increased from 47,732 to 77,300 spaces.
|Australia: 2020-21 Migration program planning levels|
|Skill Stream||Employer sponsored||22,000|
|Business Innovation & Investment program||13,500|
|Child [estimated, not subject to ceiling]||3,000|
Priority will be given to global talent, employer-sponsored and business visas. Within the Skill stream of Australian visas, the Global Talent Visa Program, the Employer-Sponsored visas and the Business Innovation and Investment Program [BIIP] are to be prioritized.
For 2020-2021, there will be 15,000 places available under the Global Talent Visa Program.
Australia’s skilled visa nomination programs are to reopen in January 2021. The final allocations to the states and territories in Australia have been issued by the Department of Home Affairs for the remainder of the program year 2020-2021.
There is to be strong focus on applicants that can help the states and territories recover from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
In November 2020, certain temporary changes have been announced by the Australian government to the family visa program in an attempt at supporting applicants impacted by the COVID-10 pandemic.
As per the temporary arrangement, Australian family visa applicants that have lodged visas offshore will no longer be required to dash overseas for being granted their visa. With this, applicants can continue on their visa pathway even if they are unable to travel offshore due to the ongoing travel restrictions.
The temporary visa concession will be applicable to the following visas –
|Child [subclass 101]|
|Adoption [subclass 102]|
|Prospective Marriage [subclass 300]|
|Partner [subclass 309]|
|Dependent Child [subclass 445]|
The English language requirement for Partner visas has also been changed. This has been done in order to maximize the employment opportunities for migrants newly arriving in Australia.
As per the announcement in October, migrants and their Australia permanent resident sponsor applying for a Partner visa will be required to have either functional-level English or be able to demonstrate that they have made efforts for learning the language.
Australian partner visa is a 2-stage process that involves getting a provisional visa for 2 years, following which the individual becomes eligible for a permanent visa.
As per the new policy, the English language competency will have to be demonstrated by the applicant at the time of applying for their permanent visa, that is, the second part of the process.
Implementation of the policy change is expected in late 2021.
In an attempt at supporting Australia’s economic recovery in the post-coronavirus scenario, the business and investment visa streams have been reduced to 4 – Significant Investor, Investor, Business Innovation, and Entrepreneur. Earlier there were 9 categories.
Similarly, the requirements for the Business Innovation visa have been increased, making it tougher for new applicants to qualify.
Now, Business Innovation visa holders will be required to hold business assets of $1.25 million [up from $800,000]. The annual turnover required, on the other hand, will be $750,000 [up from $500,000].
From July 1, 2021, certain Australian business visas are to be closed for new applicants. These are the Venture Capital Entrepreneur, Significant Business History, and the Premium Investor visas for Australia.
Additional years are to be given to international students in regional Australia. From 2021, holders of the Post-Study Work stream Temporary Graduate Visa [TGV] [subclass 485] – that had acquired their degree from an education institution in regional Australia and had lived in Australia’s regional areas on their first TGV – will be eligible for another TGV.
With the incentive, communities and universities in regional Australia will get the much-needed support for recovering from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The period of grant for the second TGV will be based on where the student had studied and lived in Australia on their first TGV.
With the additional time granted, international students in regional Australia will get ample opportunity as well as time for collecting more points for securing an invitation in the future for skilled migration.
This will ensure that prospective international students choose regional Australia as a study overseas destination.
Beginning January 1, 2021, international students as well as temporary visa holders can have their Australian visas stripped and be sent home if found to have brought “high-risk biodiversity goods” into the country or failed to declare the same at the border.
Earlier, it was only individuals that came for visit Australia that could have their visas cancelled on grounds of biosecurity contraventions.
If you are looking to Migrate, Study, Invest, Visit, or Work Overseas, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No. 1 Immigration & Visa Company.
If you found this blog engaging, you may also like …