As we move into the second half of the year, visa processing backlogs and skills shortages are making headlines with the new Albanese government prioritising migration and skills in its Skills Summit to occur next month.

Here’s a quick recap of the latest in Migration news:

  • The new Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, and Multicultural Affairs, Andrew Giles is two months into his appointment and is working with the Department of Home Affairs to manage the significant backlogs in visa processing it is experiencing.
  • The new government has indicated that permanent residence options should be considered as part of Australia’s migration settings to address long-standing skills shortages.
  • The Agriculture visa announced in late 2021 will not go ahead under the new government and the Pacific Australia Labour Mobility scheme will be expanded.

The 2022-2023 migration program commenced on 1 July 2022 with approximately 30,000 extra places for skilled migrants compared to the 2021-2022 program year. It will be interesting to see if any further places are added or whether the program will be further adjusted in the government’s budget update in October 2022.

Enjoy our updates and as always get in touch with our team if you would like advice or assistance.

Bolstering Australia’s Economic Recovery

Within the context of the post-pandemic climate, the 2022-23 Migration Program was developed with the intention of bolstering Australia’s economic recovery and driving results that contribute to social cohesion. The Migration Program for 2022–2023 will have a planned level of 160,000 spaces, with the following mix of participants:

  • This stream is intended to boost the productive capacity of the economy and fill skill shortages in the labor market, especially those that are present in regional areas of Australia. There are 109,900 available spots in this stream.
  • Family (50,000 places): This category is mostly comprised of Partner visas and enables Australians to reconnect with family members living outside of the country while also providing those family members with avenues to citizenship.
  • To make it easier for families to be reunited, the granting of partner visas will be contingent on demand beginning in 2022 and 2023. This will assist in reducing the amount of time that many candidates spend waiting in the Partner visa queue.

Partner Visas

For the purposes of planning, the number of Partner visas anticipated for 2022–2023 is 40,500; it should be noted that this estimate does not have a maximum. For the sake of planning, the number three thousand child visas is projected for the years 2022 and 2023; nevertheless, it should be noted that this category is driven entirely by demand and does not have a cap.

This visa category, which has a total of one hundred available spots, is for those who have specific eligibility requirements, such as Australian permanent citizens who are moving back to the country after living abroad.

In order to adapt quickly to changing economic circumstances as they arise, the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services, and Multicultural Affairs has the authority to transfer spaces across different Skill stream visa categories on a continuous basis.

Program Size an​d Composition

Along with the annual process of creating the budget for the Australian government, decisions on the size and make-up of the Migration Program are also made. When it comes to the development of the program, many factors are taken into consideration. These factors include public submissions, economic and labor force estimates, international research, net overseas migration, and economic and fiscal modeling.

Between November 2021 and December 2021, the Department of Home Affairs (the Department) engaged in extensive consultation with a variety of stakeholders, including state and territory governments, representatives of academia, industry, unions, and community organizations. This was done in order to inform the planning levels and policy settings of the 2022-23 Migration Program.