Anew free tree agreement has been agreed to in-principle between Australia and the United Kingdom which, aside from the opening of markets between the two countries and allowing consumers from both countries to benefit from cheaper products, will also bring significant advantages to UK nationals seeking visa opportunities in Australia. UK Working Holiday Visa holders – Age Limit Raised to 35 Under the in-principle trade agreement, working holiday makers from the UK will be able to stay in Australia for three years until the age of 35. There will also be a new agriculture visa established for UK visa holders.
Australia’s workforce has been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and over 500,000 temporary visa holders left Australia since the pandemic resulting in significant skills shortages. Australia’s economy recovery post COVID-19 will be severely hampered without the return of skilled migration. With the above realization, on 3 February 2021, the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, the Hon Alex Hawke MP, referred an inquiry into Australia’s skilled migration program to the Joint Standing Committee on Migration. The Committee has now released an Interim Report of the Inquiry into Australia’s Skilled Migration Program where 12 recommendations have been
Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services, and Multicultural Affairs Alan Tudge has announced major changes to the Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP). From 01 July 2021, this program will be simplied from nine to four streams and eligibility changes will apply. The changes are made to drive investment in key sectors and create Australian jobs. “Almost $1.3 billion dollars was invested through the Business Innovation and Investment Program last year, the investment that is critical to our COVID-19 economic recovery,” Mr Tudge said. “These changes will maximise the economic contribution of these high-value investors to get the best