21 May 2008

Australian Prime Minister praises immigration boost

The Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has given his full support to the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship's recent decision to increase the skilled immigration placement numbers by 30,000. Mr Rudd was interviewed by ABC and said the move would help deal with "overall skills demand on the economy".

He added that the increase of Australian visa places by 31,000 was a move for the future and was looking ahead to the country's job market prospects. "It's not been done in a sufficiently long term structured planned way up until now and it's time it was done that way," Mr Rudd told the news organisation.

The Prime Minister criticised the previous government for not providing a reasonable skills policy, leaving the Rudd government with high inflation and skills shortages. Mr Rudd stated that increasing education, skills and training "doesn't deal with the immediate challenge" and for that Australian immigration was the answer. On the topic of short falls in the Immigration Department he said "it's going to be tough" but the government has the support of industry.

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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