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Major reforms to streamline Australian Immigration

The Australian immigration authorities have recently taken a decision to bring about reforms to the “permanent employer-visa sponsored program” with effect from July 1st 2012. The reforms are being brought about to stream line the present immigration procedures. The idea is to make the immigration system more flexible and responsive and also economically viable. The system must meet up to the quick demands of the labor market. The reforms that are being brought about consist of 3 components:

  1. Employer Nomination Scheme(ENS)
  2. Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS)
  3.  Labor Agreements Program.
The changes that shall be made in order to make the immigration process more effective are:
  • Reducing the number of visa subclasses from 6 to 2 by getting rid of the distinction “in and outside “Australia. Also plans are to replace the permanent labor agreement visa with such streams as in RSMS and ENS.
  • Raising the upper age limit to less than 50 years.
  • Replacement of 457 list of occupation, the Employer Nomination Skilled Occupational List (ENSOL) and the State and Territory Sponsored Occupation List (STATSOL) with a single “consolidated sponsored occupation list".
  • Changes also will be brought to the criteria for English proficiency and language skills.
  • A streamlined and a rather simplified pathway for securing a Permanent Residency in Australia and also a temporary Business (Long Stay) subclass 457 visa.
  • Integrating the RSMS visas and new ENS with the Australian skilled migrants’ selection model – Skill-Select, to be launched on 1 July 2012.
  •  To strategically re-focus the “Regional  Certifying Body” (RCB) network to the “Direct Entry stream of RSMS”
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