As we near the end of the current financial year, there have been a number of changes made and announced for the state sponsorship programs around Australia. Here’s a quick update:
SA: South Australia recently announced changes to their Skilled Migration program. From 28 May 2018, graduates who wish to access the work experience waiver or the supplementary occupation list will be required to show at least 3 months work experience (minimum 40 hours per fortnight) in a skilled occupation prior to lodging an application. The Chain Migration pathway requirements will also be strengthened from 1 July, limiting applicants to a Subclass 489 visa, and requiring the ‘linked’ family member to have been living in SA for at least 2 years.
QLD: BSMQ suspended the issuing of new invitations on 21st May 2018. We are advised that BSMQ are reviewing situations where invitations were issued but no visa application was lodged, in order to ‘reuse’ these quota places this year, however, given that we are just over a month away from the new financial year, they may not re-open until after July 2018. Queensland is still accepting applications for Business visas, although these may be delayed due to the backlog.
VIC: Similar to Queensland, Victoria also has a backlog of applications to process which will likely take up the rest of the positions available until after July 2018. However, Business and Investor visas remain unaffected by this.
ACT: The ACT closed their migration program in August 2017, however, it was still possible to apply if the migrant had close ties – such as family or a job offer, or had completed a PhD at a Canberra university. It is likely that the ACT will re-open their program in July 2018, but there will probably be a high level of competition for any quota places.
All other states and territories appear to have places available in their migration program as of date of publication (28 May 2018).