Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has spent the past 12 hours filling the gaps in the announcement he made on Tuesday regarding abolishing the existing Temporary Work (Skilled) 457 visa.
The 457 visa currently used by about 95,000 foreign workers to gain employment in Australia will be replaced by the new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa in March 2018
The TSS visa program will comprise of two visa classes, Short-Term and Medium-Term, which will cover a foreign worker for two and four years respectively, with the latter reserved for more “critical” skills shortages. Additionally, applicants will be subjected to tightened English language and work experience tests, and must posses a clean criminal history. Applicants must also be under the age of 45.
200 job categories have been reduced under the new scheme, impacting a handful of technology-related employment opportunities, including electronic engineering technician, ICT support and test engineers, ICT support technicians, web developers, telecommunications cable jointers, and telecommunications technicians.
Under the new program, TSS visa holders can still perform the roles of chief executive officer, chief information officer, and managing director, as well as computer networks and systems engineer, database administrator, developer/programmer, ICT business analyst, ICT account manager, ICT business development manager, ICT customer support officer, ICT manager, ICT project manager, ICT quality assurance engineer, ICT sales representative, ICT security specialist, ICT support engineer, ICT systems test engineer, ICT trainer, hardware technician, network administrator, network analyst, software and applications programmer, software engineer, software tester, systems administrator, systems analyst, telecommunications engineer, telecommunications field engineer, telecommunications linesworker, telecommunications network engineer, telecommunications technical officer or technologist technologist, web administrator, and web designer.
Last year, the union representing communications workers criticised the placement of job advertisements in Ireland to recruit people to work on the rollout of the National Broadband Network. Under the new visa conditions, these jobs will go to Australian workers as a priority.
In a statement made by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP), it was explained that the new visa is part of the government‘s reform package aimed at strengthening the “integrity and quality” of Australia’s temporary and permanent employer sponsored skilled migration programs.
Speaking on ABC RN Breakfast on Wednesday, Turnbull touched on the inception of a national fund that will see businesses forced to pay a fee for each employee with a visa into a kitty that will be used to train Australian workers in a bid to fill skills shortages.
The visa charges are expected to be around AU$1,200 for the Short-Term stream and AU$2,400 for the Medium-Term stream, the prime minister explained.
It is expected the new levy will be announced in next month’s federal Budget
Like others in Australia’s startup scene, Mike Cannon-Brookes, co-CEO and co-founder of Atlassian, has said on many occasions that the biggest challenge the nation is facing is its lack of talent and believes bringing in overseas talent while Australia waits for its own students to be trained up is crucial.
Speaking on 2GB late Tuesday, Turnbull said that if the sort of skills Atlassian is seeking cannot be filled by Australians, the new system will enable them to be filled by people from overseas.
For More information:- Asha McLean