22 September 2011

Victorian Government to sponsor new occupations for Australian immigration

The Victorian Department of Business and Innovation has released an updated version of its State Migration Plan (SMP) outlining a number of new additions to the list of sponsored occupations.

Australian visa

The Victorian Government has added new occupations to its State Migration Plan.

Applicants for Australian visas who have work experience as ship engineers, surveyors or computer network and systems engineers will now be considered for sponsorship under the State Migration Plan.

In a statement released on 20 September, the department stated that it is "seeking to attract up to 6000 skilled migrants and dependants in a range of priority industries".

Beyond the additions to the list, a number of occupations retained their status, particularly in the field of ICT.

In January 2011 the department discontinued processing applications for ICT occupations due to overwhelming interest from this field.

The re-emergence of ICT occupations in the list is significant according to Australian Visa Bureau spokesperson Lauren Mennie.

"We feel it (ICT occupations) is a notable inclusion as it is showing a long term demand, despite easily filling their quota for that occupation last year," Ms Mennie said.

A number of non-ICT occupations such as 'cook' and 'pastry cook' were also retained in the list and no occupations were removed from the previous list.

The department has this year changed the reporting of financial criteria, explicitly outlining the required funds to secure sponsorship for Australian immigration for each occupation. Previously financial assessments have been made on a case-by-case basis.

Victorian sponsorships for people emigrating to Australia are highly competitive. The department has stressed that "meeting the minimum eligibility requirements will not guarentee you an offer of sponsorship".

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people lodge their Australia immigration application with the Australian High Commission.

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