10 September 2009

Second Australia Migration Occupations in Demand List review update and Australian visa timeframe change

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The Australian Government has released its second issues paper on the Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL) review, revealing more details on what migrants and migration agents can expect to change in the Australian General Skilled Migration program.

The full results of the review of the Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL) are not expected to announced until next month but Casework Department Manager of the Australian Visa Bureau, Lauren Mennie said the second issues paper does contain important information regarding the Future Skills List.

The Future Skills list is set to replace both the MODL and the Critical Skills List (CSL) as the method that migrants will be assessed with regards to high value skills.

The second issues paper showed that the Australian Government was considering three potential options with the Futures Skills List:  no Future Skills List in the GSM process; Future Skills List as component of GSM Points Test; or the Future Skills List replaces the CSL as a prioritisation mechanism.

Lauren Mennie discusses the implications of these options in more detail on the Visa Bureau blog.

The second issues review does give a limited indication how the changes will be introduced.

"All three options for integrating a new Future Skills List with the GSM assessment process require complementary changes to the Points Test," the second issues paper states.

"A sensible transition period would need to be established to ensure a smooth administrative implementation and to provide potential applicants with adequate notice of changes to the eligibility requirements.

"It would also be sensible to look to align any changes to MODL with Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s plan to transition from using Australian Standard Classification of Occupations to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification on Occupations as a basis for the Skilled Occupations List in the first half of 2010."

Lauren Mennie said it could be assumed that all the changes to the Australian General Skillled Migration program that Visa Bureau previously anticipated will be made, and that the Government is hoping to launch all the changes as part of one, unified overhaul to the Australian migration program in early 2010.

"However, with so many changes involved, it seems very possible that they'll be forced to stagger them over a series of months and some could arrive sooner than expected.  Until some more concrete announcements are made, it's hard to put too much stock in any prospective timeframe," she said.

"We advise that all Australian visa applicants should work quickly towards lodging their visa application, if they have not already done so," she said.

The issues papers, the first released in August and the second released just yesterday, were put together jointly by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations and the Department of Immigration and Citizenship as part of the  MODL review to present to the Australian Government.


 The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their Australia visa applications.


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