AUSTRALIA – 457 Visa Programme to be Tightened Up
Over the weekend, the Australian Minister of Immigration & Citizenship, Brendan O’Çonnor, MP announced a forthcoming tightening of requirements in respect of Subclass 457 visas. The Migration Regulations have not been amended but this is expected in the near future.
The changes focus on employer compliance and on protecting jobs for the Australian labour market. Below is an extract from the media release by the Minister:
The government has decided to introduce a set of changes to the 457 program to ensure employers give Australian workers a fair go.
Under the changes:
- Employers must demonstrate that they are not nominating positions where a genuine shortage does not exist
- The English language requirements for certain positions have been raised
- The enforceability of existing training requirements for businesses that use the program will be strengthened
- The market salary exemption will rise from $180 000 to $250 000
- On-hire arrangements of 457 visa workers will be restricted
- Compliance and enforcement powers will be beefed up to stop employers who have routinely abused the 457 system
- Stakeholders will be consulted to ensure market rate provisions more effectively protect local employment
So far, the Migration Regulations have not been amended; we will alert you as soon as they have been, and Immiguru, Peregrine’s user-friendly immigration database containing detailed information on over 300 immigration processes to more than 50 countries, will be updated.
- Note that changes to the 457 programme are expected soon; watch this space!