01 July 2011

New Australian immigration rules and visa points test introduced

As of today, 1 July, 2011, the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) has implemented a number of changes to the General Skilled Migration (GSM) program, chief of which is the implementation of a new Australia visa points test.

Australian immigration

As of 1 July, 2011, DIAC has implemented a number of changes to the Australian skilled migration program.

The changes to Australia's skilled migration program have been made in order to target the "best and the brightest", with more emphasis placed on work experience, high-level educational qualifications and English language proficiency.

The new points test is a critical part of the process involved when applying for an Australia visa, as in order to lodge an application, applicants must be able to demonstrate that they both meet the basic skilled migration requirements and are also able to pass the points test at the time of lodging their visa.

Skilled visa applicants will now have to score 65 points on the points test. The points test awards points for:

Speaking on the changes, Immigration Minister Chris Bowen made the following comments:

"These changes to the points test are an important next step in the series of reforms to the skilled migration program announced by the Government in February this year.

"The reforms set the foundations for a skilled migration program that will be responsive to our economic needs and continue to serve Australia's interests in the medium to long term."

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people lodge their application with the Australian High Commission

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