02 November 2012

Government announces Australia visa simplifications

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Immigration Minister Chris Bowen and Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury have issued a joint media release outlining simplifications made to Australia visa application processes for temporary workers.

Australia visa

The ministers hope the changes will reduce the levels of bureaucracy and 'red tape' involved in obtaining an Australian visa

As of 24 November, the number of Australia visa options will be reduced from 17 to eight in a move the ministers hope will make it easier for foreign applicants to apply for the correct visas for their circumstances.

"The government is delivering on a pledge to simplify the application process by halving the number of specialist temporary work visa subclasses from 17 to eight," said Mr Bowen.

"On 24 November, we will roll out a simplified specialist temporary work visa framework as part of the government's Better Regulation Ministerial Partnership: Simpler Visas.

"This initiative seeks to make it easier for people to understand and engage with Australia's visa requirements."

While the changes will mostly affect applicants in more specialist or less-used visa categories such as religious workers, diplomats, entertainers and visiting academics, Mr Bradbury maintains the changes are a positive step in the simplification process and will yield further benefits.

"This visa reform is aimed at reducing costs imposed on business and the not-for-profit sector by unnecessary or poorly designed regulation," said the Minister Assisting for Deregulation.

"Criteria across these visas have been standardised to provide a more consistent approach to requirements to reduce unnecessary complexity for applicants and decision makers.

"Employers and business who rely on specialist temporary work visa holders will be the key beneficiaries of the simplification of the visa system."

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent migration consultancy specialising in helping people lodge applications with the Australian Embassy.

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