While we often get involved in the detail of issues, which is largely our role as Migration agents, it’s useful to think about the policy issues that surround the changes in legislation. This past week I was delighted to be able to participate in several policy issues around the labour market and immigration for Australia and Western Australia.
As a participant in the Ai Group Consultation Forum it was a privilege to hear the views of many other businesses around the table and the challenges that they are facing in the current environment.
As WA moves towards a State Election in March 2017 it is probably the most difficult economic environment that business and government has had to manage for quite some time.
Later in the week, Visa Solutions, took a more active approach to the proposed announcement by Labor to remove Perth from the list of regional cities for the Regional Skilled Migration Scheme (RSMS). In our view, this would be a seriously retrograde step and potentially worsen the economic environment for WA. Prolonging an already depressed economic environment. While the argument of the Labor party is easy to understand, it is inevitably flawed.
Unemployment is clearly at a high level and there is significant slack in various markets including the housing sector, commercial CBD, retail and several other sectors. But WA needs population growth to lift economic growth. Skilled migrants coming to confirmed in employment in Perth, enrolling their kids in school, renting an l empty house and lifting retail spending in clearly good for the economy. We need to think more broadly about the positive impact that immigration has on the economy and instead of shutting the doors, welcome a higher level of population growth in Western Australia.
“whatever the situation or the circumstance, we will find the best possible solution”