17 February 2009

Australia still actively seeking British skilled workers

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While Australia is beginning to feel the effects of recession taking its course in Japan, Europe, the UK and the US, debates about the levels of Australian immigration have been picking up speed.

As it stands, the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Chris Evans has promised he would keep the skilled migration quota at its record levels of 133,000, until the Government releases the 2009-10 Budget.

This means that the tens of thousands of British migrants that escape the doom and gloom of the UK's weather (and now economy) in search of a better lifestyle Down Under can continue to do so.

The number of Briton's emigrating to Australia has more than doubled over the past decade, with more than 23,000 moving to Australia in 2006-07.  With Australia's economy showing signs of greater resilience to the recession, it seems likely that more British nationals would be joining the drove to escape the European recession. 

According to the Independent, Steve Davis, regional director for immigration at the Australian High Commission, said even more Britons are now looking to Australia for a better lifestyle, and fortunately for them, Australia still needs their skills.

"Australia is actively seeking to recruit British skilled workers to move to Australia, particularly in the areas of health, engineering, accounting and trades," Davis said.

"Recent research shows that the main reason British people are migrating to Australia is for the lifestyle, including the climate.  They also listed future opportunities for their families and work opportunities as key reasons for moving," he added.

The UK makes up the second largest group of migrants to Australia than any other country, following only New Zealand, whose nationals do not need an Australian visa to reside and work in Australia permanently.  Of the 4.4 million Australian residents who were born overseas during the 2006 Census, up to 47 per cent were European-born, and half of these were from the United Kingdom. 

Next month, an Opportunities Australia Expo will be held in Leeds and London for those looking to migrate to Australia.  There, prospective migrants can set up bank accounts, talk to government representatives, enrol with recruitment agents, establish the cheapest way to transfer funds, get quotes from shipping companies and give resumes directly to major Australian companies. 

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with emigrating to Australia.

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