A new Australian Visa category is being considered to stop skills shortages in the resources sector.
19 November 2010
New Australian Visa category considered for mining industry
The Australian Government is considering creating a new type of visa for the mining industry to avoid a major skilled labour shortage.
Expanding mining projects in Queensland and Western Australia and the need for skilled workers to keep production levels high has seen the mining industry lobby heavily for changes in the immigration system.
The federal government is considering the creation of a new form of Australian Visa specifically for the mining industry, as well as changing the education requirements for trades in the resources industry, which could see four-year apprenticeships reduced to 18 months.
The changes face resistance from union groups, which oppose the watering down of training practices and the increased use of foreign labour.
Offical forecasts have predicted a skills shortage of 35,000 by 2015 in the resources sector.