We all know the impact that Covid-19 has had on Australia and countries around the world in terms of health and economically. With lockdowns ending in various parts of the world, some countries are slowly beginning to open their borders to tourism with visitors from low risk countries gaining entry.
Federal Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg has suggested that as Australia continues to get on top of Covid-19 cases, there is the possibility that borders may re-open in the first half of 2021. Of course, state borders would need to re-open to other states first before international visitors would be allowed entry. Once that happens, perhaps free movement between low risk countries can occur.
Re-opening the country’s borders to international travellers raises the question of what happens in terms of migration?
While no announcements have been made as to what will happen with visa processing once the borders open, we can only assume that visa processing will re-commence for everyone and that visas will be granted on a priority basis.
The question remains, what will the priorities be when it comes to relaxing border restrictions? It would make sense that those requiring work visas to fill skills shortages will be bumped to the top of the list along with holders of student visas.
Currently, Australian universities are losing money by the day by not having the financial injection international students bring with them so it stands to reason that they will try to get the international students back into Australia and studying as soon as possible.
While borders opening is a positive step, as with anything, there are pros and cons to this, and everyone will have an opinion on how it should work. It’s fair to say the positives will far outweigh the negatives. Positives for re-opening the borders and migration such as the financial benefits for the country and various industries, companies being able to fill positions where skills shortages are present and a sense of getting back to some kind of normal will most likely have a great impact on the issue.
This is one of those situations where we need to wait and see what will happen with the re-opening of borders and how the process will be managed.
While Australian borders are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, travel exemptions may apply under the following circumstances:
- A traveller has a compassionate or compelling reason to visit Australia
- Overseas workers holding a Subclass 482 or 400 visa are required to undertake a job in Australia that cannot be filled by a local employee
Visa Solutions Australia has been successful in acquiring a broad range of exemptions, from critical workers to those needing to travel on compassionate grounds.
If you would like to discuss any aspect of migration, speak to the Visa Solutions Australia team on 1800 828 008.