Last night, the Government had handed down its first full Budget in 2022. The following announcements were included in the Budget and associated papers.
Migration Planning Levels
The 2023-24 migration planning level will increase to 190,000 places, with 137,100 allocated to the skilled migration stream.
Increase in Fees and Charges
Visa Application Charges (VACs) will be raised by the government by between 6% and 40% across the following visa subclasses, effective from July 1, 2023:
|Visa Classes||Percentage increase|
|Visitor, working holiday, work and holiday, training, temporary activity and temporary work (short stay specialist) visas||15%|
|Business innovation and investment visas||40%|
|Pacific Engagement Visa and Pacific Australia Labour Mobility visas||Exempt from increase|
The Passenger Movement Charge paid by carriers will increase from $60 to $70.
Increase in TSMIT
The Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold will increase from $53,900 to $70,000 from 1 July 2023.
Visa processing and compliance monitoring
Visa processing capacity has received funding of $75.8 million over two years from 2023–24. Of this, $48.1 million will be allocated to support 500 visa processing officers to manage visa applications on hand. $27.8 million will be spent to improve visa service delivery efficiency. $50.0 million is to be provided to maintain the integrity of the migration system.
AusCheck will be provided with $164.8 million to establish enduring funding arrangements, and also be extended to the migration service industry.
Domestic Violence and People Trafficking
$38.2 million will be provided to extend to the current Escaping Violence Payment (EVP) and Temporary Visa Holders Experiencing Violence Pilot (TVP) to January 2025.
$24.3 million will be provided to pilot an additional referral pathway for the Support for Trafficked People Program and to restructure the program, while increasing ongoing funding to address current and projected demand.
Immigration Assessment Authority
The Government will provide $4.0 million for the Immigration Assessment Authority to continue merits review of unsuccessful protection visa applications eligible for fast-track review.
Migrant and Refugee Settlement Services
$9.1 million to be provided to extend existing Youth Transition Support services for 12 months to 30 June 2024.
Adult Migrant English Program
An improved delivery model for the AMEP will be implemented within the existing funding, with improved English language, employment, and settlement outcomes for migrants.
Love and Thoms High Court cases
$5.5 million over 4 years provided to support a pathway to permanent residency for individuals who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents, and who satisfy the tripartite test as set out in Mabo v Queensland [No. 2] (1992) 175 CLR 1, as a result of the High Court’s decision in Love v Commonwealth; Thoms v Commonwealth (2020) 270 CLR 152.
Eligible individuals will be invited to apply for the Resolution of Status visa (subclass 851) for permanent residence providing access to essential Government entitlements, services and programs.
Temporary Graduate Post Study Rights
Temporary Graduate visa holders with select degrees will be eligible for an extra 2 years of post-study work rights from 1 July 2023.
International students working hour cap
The working hour cap for international student visa holders will be reinstated to 48 hours per fortnight from 1 July 2023, except those who work in the aged care sector (until 31 December 2023).
Additional training places will be created for Pacific Australia Labour Mobility scheme workers in priority sectors for the Pacific and Timor-Leste and where there are job shortages in Australia.
Skills Assessment – Improved Skills Recognition
The Government is re-scoping two Skills Assessment Pilots.
The qualifications of students from India and Australia will be recognised by both countries thanks to the Mechanism for the Mutual Recognition of Qualifications.
Source: Migration Institute of Australia
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