COVID-19 Impact on the Australian Migration Intake
As communicated by the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, Australia will be expecting a ‘quite significant’ fall in migration with possibility of up to an 85% decrease in the coming financial year.
Australia proudly has approximately 2.1 million people holding temporary visas and 1.78 million currently on a substantive permanent residency visa. International students alone bring in around $39 billion per year for the Australian economy, making it our fourth largest industry.
In the 2018/2019 financial year, Australia’s population grew by nearly 240,000 and the anticipated 2020/2021 financial year is expecting to grow our population by only 36,000. This is a significant drop and one which will show our lowest population increase in over 40 years.
Scott Morrison has advised that after COVID-19 and travel bans are lifted, he has the intention of keeping the migration intake between 160,000-210,000 per year which is an increase on the 2019/2020 financial year which held a cap of 160,000.
An example of significant decreases in immigration applications:
- Only 50 invitations were issued for a skilled independent visa (subclass 189) down from 1,750 in the previous invitation round; and
- The last round of invitations for skilled regional work visa (subclass 491) were down to 50 from the previous round offering 300.
This reduction will no doubt have a negative effect on the Australian economy and planning by the government will be crucial for our coronavirus recovery plan.
The government has indicated they plan on pushing the Global Talent Independent program, which was introduced to Australia’s migration options in November, to offer a fast-tracked permanent visa option to the best and brightest of the world.
Our fingers are crossed for the possible ‘reset’ of the permanent migration program in October, with Cabinet boss Martin Parkinson pleading the government to ‘go for broke’ on skilled migration and give it everything we have got.