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New pathways to permanent residency for temporary skilled visa holders

The Australian government is expanding pathways to permanent residence for employer-sponsored temporary skilled visa holders.

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The Australian government is expanding pathways to permanent residence for employer-sponsored temporary skilled visa holders.

“By the end of 2023, the Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) stream of the Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa will be available to all Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa holders whose employers wish to sponsor them,” the Department of Home Affairs said in a statement.

Applicants will need to continue working in the occupation nominated for their TSS visa(s), but occupations will not be limited to the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL), according to DoHA.

“Eligibility for the TRT stream will be reduced from three years to two years employment with the sponsoring employer, and applicants will need to meet all other nomination and visa requirements for the TRT stream of the Employer Nomination Scheme visa,” it said.

The government has announced that the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) will increase from $53,900 to $70,000 from July 1, 2023. The TSMIT sets the minimum salary that employers must pay temporary skilled migrants to work in Australia. New nominations will need to meet the new TSMIT or the annual market salary rate, whichever is higher. The change will not affect existing visa holders or approved nominations lodged before July 1, 2023.

To facilitate these pathways to PR, the government is also removing limits on the number of Short-term stream TSS visa applications that visa holders can make in Australia. This is an interim measure to assist those currently onshore who would normally need to go offshore to make further visa applications.

The changes will provide more equitable access to permanent residence and more certainty to TSS visa holders and their employers about the permanent residence pathways available. Employers will be able to alleviate skills shortages by ensuring a permanent employer-sponsored pathway is available for a wider range of occupations.

The Minister for Home Affairs, the Hon Clare O’Neil MP, announced the changes during her National Press Club address last week. These changes in pathways to PR are in line with the government’s commitment to expanding pathways to permanent residence for temporary skilled sponsored workers, which was made at the Jobs and Skills Summit in September 2022. The Australian government hopes that these changes will provide more opportunities for skilled migrants to work and settle in Australia, while also helping to alleviate skills shortages in key industries.

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