The number of Australian Temporary Work (Skilled) (Subclass 457) visa applications rose by 15% between 2014 and 2015, according to the latest figures released by the Australian Immigration Department.
Introduced in 1996, the 457 Work Visa to Australia allows skilled workers from overseas to work in Australia for up to four years. The popularity of this visa scheme stems from the diversity of occupations on offer through the program. Ranging from engineers to music directors, the occupations list has opened up opportunities for international applicants and Australian employers alike.
Whilst the eligible occupations are reviewed and amended annually depending on Australia’s skilled shortages, the demand for skilled visas remains steady with over half of the applicants coming from China, Britain and India.
The popularity of this visa looks set to increase further. In the 9 months between June 2014 and March 2015 (the period the figures cover) 40,870 applications were made for the 457 visa, up by 15% on the 35,440 applications made in the same 9 month period ending March 2014. A majority of this increase is made up of applicants from the IT, Science and Hospitality sector.
The Department of Immigration and Border Protection recently announced that more than a quarter of the 457 applications made in this time frame were submitted from backpackers and foreign students who were already living in Australia.
If you would like to apply for an Australian 457 visa, Visa Solutions Australia can help. If you are currently in Australia and would like to speak to a registered migration agent, we have offices based in Perth. For applicants who are currently overseas, our team can organise a consultation on your 457 visa options and assist you throughout the entire application process. Please feel free to contact us for further details.