New South Wales expands Skilled Occupation List

- Posted in Australia by Dominicon 23 October 2012

New South Wales has added a
substantial number of occupations
to its Skilled Occupations List.

New South Wales has extensively expanded the number of occupations which qualify for state sponsorship.

Until now, only highly skilled occupations such as accountants, lawyers, certain science specialists and just two educational professionals were eligible for an Australia visa with sponsorship from NSW.

The list, which originally contained just a couple of dozen separate occupations, has now been expanded to over 100 separate occupations including 52 separate health and medical care occupations, 16 individual engineering fields, eight teaching fields and 24 metal, building or trade occupations.

"New South Wales previously prioritised highly skilled migrants for its migration program," said Leonie Cotton, casework manager at the Australian Visa Bureau.

"Due to the state's popularity - its location, home to the country's largest city and economic hub - it could be argued that New South Wales had a right to be more selective than other states.

"However, with the Australian economy beginning to adjust to the slowdown in the mining industry, the Australian government, and certainly the NSW government, know that in order to continue such a healthy economic outlook, the workforce needs to be diverse and adaptable.

As part of the changes to the Skilled Occupations List, the English language requirements - which were as high as 8 for some occupations - have been lowered to 6, although the work experience for other occupations, such as cookery, have been increased.

British, New Zealand, Canadian, American and Irish passport holders are also exempt from providing an IELTS certificate with their NSW applications, however some applicants may still need to take the test to reach the pass mark for a General Skilled Migration visa

"Lowering the IELTS pass mark and widening the State Migration Plan so substantially suggests emigrating to Australia is becoming incredibly more accessibly for those with their hearts set on New South Wales," said Ms Cotton.

"New South Wales has traditionally been one of the toughest states to receive sponsorship from but the new list is great news for trades workers and medical professionals."

The full Skilled Occupations List can be read here.

- Dominic Ladden-Powell is the Online Editor for the Australian Visa Bureau.