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The Australian Department of Immigration is introducing a number of changes to the Skilled Migration Program. The changes are coming in force on 16th November 2019.

The main amendments include the following:

  • Increase in planning levels – an increase in regional migration visa places from 23,000 to 25,000
  • Introduction of new Australian Visas:

– Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) Visa- subclass 494 and
– Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa – subclass 491

The regional Visa complete applications will receive priority processing.

  • New Regional Areas defined in including Perth and Gold Coast. The New Reginal areas apply to the following Visas:

-Skilled Migrant- 189 Independent visa
-Skilled Migrant – 190 Nominated Visa
-Skilled Migrant – 491 Work Regional Visa
-Business Visa –    888 Innovation and Investment Visa
-Business Visa –    892 State/Territory Sponsored Business Owner
-Employer Sponsored- Nomination

The list of new regional locations can be viewed here: 

  • Introduction of the Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) Visa, subclass 494
  • Introduction of the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa, subclass 491
  • Holders of the 491 will be eligible for Medicare
  • Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) Visa, subclass 191 to be introduced on 16 November 2022 (this visa would eventually replace the current subclass 887)


New points allocation for Skilled Migrant Visa Applications:

15 points – for nomination by a Australian State or Territory Government or sponsorship by a family member residing in regional Australia – these points can be claimed only by applicants willing to live and work in regional Australia

10 points – for a skilled spouse or de facto partner

10 points – for certain Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) qualifications

5 points – for a spouse or de facto partner with “competent English”

10 points – for applicants  without a spouse or de facto partner

The amendments to legislation follow the Australian Government aim to respond to various changes, including those in the labour market and economy.

To see if you qualify under the new rules, email us your details, including date of birth and summary of your work experience and qualifications: [email protected] or call us on 0207 427 5970.

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