26 November 2008

The Times newspaper begs Aussies to stay in London - Oz now "safest" place

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An editorial article in The Times newspaper yesterday pleaded with Australians to curb the mass exodus back home, and Australian news providers are welcoming the acknowledgement that Aussies in London are making a name for themselves – and it's not just for their drinking prowess.

The Times made it clear that Australians in London are no longer beer-pulling louts, but are in fact an important contributor to the economy, particularly as many have come to gain valuable experience from working their way up the ladder in The City.  The biggest draw cards for Australians to London traditionally rested in the strong pound, the perfect positioning for cheap travel in the Northern Hemisphere, and unmatched job opportunities.

Although Britain will continue to be a favourite destination for the Aussie and Kiwi OE, it seems the prospect of moving to Australia for its job opportunities and financial benefits during the UK recession is proving more popular.  Of the 400,000 Australians living in the UK now, around 2,700 are returning home every month, which is almost double that of the 2005 monthly rate. 

"As the recession bites, the lure of home, with unemployment at a 33-year low and the (Australian) dollar at an 11-year high against sterling, is very tempting.  Sitting on the sort of budget surplus that this country can only envy, the Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, is even forecasting that he can avoid recession," the author said.

"With the roof fixed in the good times, it is not surprising that many bright young Australians have remembered that back at home, the sun is always shining."

Now that job prospects in The City are becoming less attractive and less available, Australians are returning to their homeland with their developed skills and padded wallets, before the falling UK currency devalues their earnings. 

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, in the year to June, 13,062 Australians applied for a UK working holiday visa compared with more than 27,000 two years ago.

Bernard Salt, KPMG's demographer and analyst, said that Australia was now the safest option for young people in the global economic crisis, with skills shortages and low unemployment at 4.7 per cent.

"The economic crisis has had blanket coverage in Washington, London and New York. In Australia it has come off page one of the papers." he said.

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

Article by Jessica Bird, Australian Visa Bureau.

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