Australian Government announcements to enact new visa options from November 2019 for migrants to live, work and study in regional Australia means that there has never been a better time for highly skilled applicants to migrate to regional Australia.

The new visa options provide a clear pathway for high calibre skilled migrants to obtain Australian permanent residence willing to apply their skills and experience in less populated areas of Australia outside Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Brisbane or the Gold Coast.

Regional Migration options are targeted at highly skilled migrants who meet stringent requirements to ensure the regions are attracting the best and the brightest talent from around the world.

Skilled visa applicants must:

  • be less than 45 years of age,
  • have an occupation on a targeted Skilled Occupation list
  • successfully complete a formal Skills Assessment from a relevant assessing body in Australia
  • have relevant work experience
  • a high level of English language skills
  • meet health and character requirements

5 Compelling Reasons to consider Regional Australian migration

1. More occupations available for employer sponsorship

The new Subclass 494 Skilled Employer-Sponsored Regional (Provisional) Visa will offer regional employers access to a broader range of occupations than existing employer-sponsored programs with an additional 673 eligible occupations (Over 450 more occupations than closest non-regional equivalent visa) available for regional sponsorship.

2. Pathways to PR for all employer-sponsored occupations in regional Australia

A pathway to Australian permanent residence will be available to all visa applicants sponsored under the Subclass 494 Regional Employer Sponsored visa.  This is unlike the existing employer-sponsored programs which separate occupations into different lists, with only some occupations able to progress to Australian permanent residence.

The pathway to Australian permanent residence will be accessible via the Subclass 191 Skilled Regional Migrant visa which will be available from November 2022 for applicants who have complied with all of the conditions of the Subclass 494 visa and demonstrated that all applicants have lived, worked and studied in a regional area for at least 3 years.

3. Reduced costs for regional employers

The costs of regional employer sponsorship will be reduced with no applicable Nomination Application Charge for employer-sponsored applications and the Skilling Australians Fund (SAF) Charge to be $3,000.00 for a 5 year period for a business with a turnover of less than $10M.  The existing employer-sponsored program requires employers with an equivalent turnover to pay $1,200.00 per year of sponsorship on the temporary visa and an additional $3,000.00 when they sponsor for Australian permanent residence.

4. Pathway to Australian permanent residence does not require employer sponsorship

Existing employer sponsorship programs require visa holders to remain with the same employer for 3 years at the end of which the employer must sponsor for permanent residence on the basis that they have a genuine position available for at least the next 2 years.

The new pathway to Australian permanent residence under the Subclass 191 visa allows visa applicants to apply for Australian permanent residence without stage 2 permanent residence sponsorship from the employer and will allow visa applicants who change employer sponsors to still apply for permanent residence after 3 years.  This will reduce the likelihood of exploitation of employer-sponsored visa holders as they are free to change employers without impacting their options for permanent residence or employers controlling the decision as to whether the temporary employer-sponsored visa applicant can apply for permanent residence at the end of the 3 years.

The new subclass 191 visa process is also advantageous to the employer as they do not need to make a further Nomination Application at the permanent residence stage which presently attracts a further Skilling Australian Fund Charge Fee of $3,000.00 to $5,000.00 and the Visa Applicant is entitled to apply for their permanent residence on the basis of the prior 3 years worked in the regional area.

The clear pathway to Australian permanent residence under the Regional Sponsorship Visa Program constitutes a marked difference from existing employer-sponsored programs. The associated advantages provide compelling reasons for visa applicants to seek regional sponsorship over metropolitan sponsors.

5. Longer employer-sponsored visa period

Employers will be able to sponsor for the subclass 494 visa, a 5-year visa.

Contact us to explore your options for Australian Regional Sponsorship under the Skilled Employer-Sponsored Regional (Provisional) (SESR) visa
Subclass 494 Program.