The establishment of the Australian Agriculture visa was recently announced. Its purpose is to respond to workforce shortages in the agriculture and primary industry sectors. This visa is intended to create opportunities for workers in farming, fisheries, forestry and meat processing to take up skilled and unskilled jobs that can’t be filled domestically.
There is still a lot that is unknown about this visa such as how closely it will resemble the current Pacific labour programs and what safeguards will be put in place to ensure these existing programs are not undermined. Initial plans for this visa were to support labour requirements in regional areas. Flexibility on this has been requested especially where there is a need for seafood processing workers in metro areas.
The Australian Agriculture visa will be open to applicants across a range of countries and could also potentially offer a pathway to permanent residence. Once the details of this visa are finalised, the next issue will be flight availability for Australian Agriculture visa holders. Current flight caps allow 3,000 people to enter Australia each week. When you consider tens of thousands of Australians are still trying to get home, the chances of a visa holder getting a flight to Australia significantly diminishes.
On the assumption that getting a flight into Australia is not an issue, hotel quarantine comes into play. Currently, hotel quarantine is one of the biggest constraints in bringing overseas workers into Australia.the details of this visa including skills eligibility and English competency will be finalised in coming weeks with it coming into effect in November 2021.
If you would like to learn more about the Australian Agriculture visa or any other aspect of migration, contact the Visa Solutions team on 1800 828 008.
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.