Skilled migrants to Australia belonging to a priority occupation will have their visa applications fast-tracked by the Australian government after 22 new occupations were added to the Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL).
Skilled migration applicants belonging to the civil engineering and software programming job categories, among others, will benefit from the priority processing of their visa applications.
Priority processing allows skilled migrants belonging to eligible occupations to have their skilled visa applications fast-tracked in order to hasten their arrival in Australia to boost the country’s workforce.
Australia’s PMSOL consists of 41 occupations deemed critical by the Australian government to aid the country’s economic recovery following the coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking on expanding the PMSOL and priority processing for skilled migration applications for select job categories, Australia’s Immigration Minister Alex Hawke said that the eligible workers belonging to the PMSOL occupations were considered to be job multipliers.
He also said that the Morrison administration is committed to supporting Australian businesses, and that skilled migration to Australia is the engine room of the Australian economy.
Mr Hawke also said that eligible skilled migrants to Australia are pivotal to the country’s target of reopening borders by mid-2022, and that the Australian government is working on attracting and inviting essential workers to the country.
He also underlined the importance of skilled migration to Australia, saying that the Australian skilled migration program will play a crucial part in the economic recovery and how successful the country will be on that journey.
The decision to expand the PMSOL was hailed by several industry leaders in Australia, who said it would help Australian businesses address chronic skills shortages in the country.
Stephen Ferguson, CEO of the Australian Hotels Association (AHA) – a peak hospitality body in Australia – expressed delight with chefs being included in the PMSOL, saying that border closures prevented businesses from employing international chefs – a critical part of the hospitality sector workforce.
The Australian Resources and Energy Group CEO Steve Knott also welcomed the addition of geotechnical, mining, and petroleum engineers to the priority occupations list, saying that it would boost skill shortages in Australia’s resources and energy sectors.
The PMSOL was first developed in September 2020 in coordination with the National Skills Commission, with 19 priority occupations identified at the time.
Following the devastating impact of COVID-19 on Australia’s migration plans and the economy, the Australian government has expanded the PMSOL to now include 41 priority occupations to lure skilled migrants to the country.
New occupations added to the PMSOL include accountants, chefs, and other skilled individuals belonging to different engineering fields.