Australia’s Migration Program 2020-21 will be unveiled via the budget process on October 6, 2020. The migration intake of Australia will be largely affected and determined by the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, there’s a strong focus on economic recovery.
Australia’s treasury is hopeful of the country to gradually reopen in the first half of 2021. International travelers will nevertheless be required to follow the quarantine procedure for 14 days upon arrival in Australia.
With border reopening migrants will return and trigger renewed activity to rejuvenate the country’s economy. But the results will take time to reach pre-pandemic levels. Skilled migrants will play a major role in filling the skill gaps in the local labor sector.
Australian government expect the net overseas migration to be just 35,000 in 2020-21. The actual requirement for maintaining a healthy GDP growth is between 160,000 and 220,000. The budget to be presented on October 6, 2020, will now foresee a negative net overseas migration in the current as well as next financial year.
One of the measures taken to meet with the circumstance could be retaining the migration overseas to Australia ceiling at 160,000. But a more realistic estimation suggests that the ceiling will be set somewhere between 100,000 and 110,000 places.
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, this year’s budget announcement has been delayed. Also, the states and territories have received only limited interim nomination places for select occupations crucial to the state’s recovery. These include health, engineering, and information and technology, among others. The workers needed to work in Australia in these occupations are procured from the GSM program which acts as a channel to bring in skilled workers in select occupations desirous of migrating to Australia.
The Australian government will be working on the commitment to regional Australia. The Australian government had set aside 25,000 places for regional visas previously. 23,372 visas were delivered out of that 25,000.
The Australian government is also taking steps to urge overseas travelers and young Australians to stay back in Australia longer. They are also urged to take up farming jobs so that the regional job shortages can be solved.
There will also be a move to grant more visas to visa applicants who remain onshore. This will reduce the dependency on overseas arrivals. This policy also aligns with the “Australians first” motto of the Australian government.
Besides all these, the increase in VAC is also on the cards.
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GSM – General Skilled Migration
VAC – Visa Application Charge