18 June 2008

Immigration helps skills shortages in Australian construction industry

A skills shortage in the building industry on Australia's Sunshine Coast has been solved by immigration in the region. A course teaching Australian visa holders brick laying, which was the first of its kind when it began, will plug some of the gaps in the industry, reports theDaily.com.au.

Being accepted on the course helped one Australian visa applicant, who had previously found the application process "a bit strict". The course is part of a scheme from the Australian government to make the immigration process easier. It allows the freeing up or migrant visa conditions if people want to work or study in a skills shortage area.

Linda Schlanger, director of vocation education and training at the local TAFE, told the website countries like the UK had been targeted specially. "Construction is one of the fastest-growing industries on the coast so we wanted to make a difference in that area ... and the local builders have given us great support." Mark McGowan, the Education and Training Minister of Western Australia recently said the area could benefit from immigration to boost its skills shortages.

Australia needs skilled workers: Anyone applying for an Australian visa should begin by completing the Australian Visa Bureau's online Australian visa application to see if they meet the Australian visa requirements.

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