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2000-2001 Migration (non-Humanitarian) Program to further increase focus on skills.
Philip Ruddock MP Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Reconciliation
2000-2001 Migration (Non-Humanitarian) Program
to Further Increase Focus on Skills
The planning level for the 2000-2001 Migration (non-Humanitarian) Program will be 76,000 places, including a 5,000 place increase in the Skill Stream, the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs, Mr Philip Ruddock, announced.
"The further shift in the balance of the Program towards the Skill Stream will deliver additional economic, budgetary and employment benefits, particularly given the skill shortages that have emerged in the Australian economy," Mr Ruddock said.
The Minister said that a 5,000 increase in the Skill Stream has become possible because of the success of the new points test in attracting young migrants with strong English language skills and qualifications in high demand occupations such as IT and accounting.
More than half of people visaed under the new points test have an occupation on the Migration Occupations in Demand list (MODL) even though this list reflects only about 8% of occupations in the workforce.
Because many of these migrants are former overseas students, they have the further advantage of having qualifications easily recognised in Australia and have prior experience of life and work in Australia.
Former overseas students to Australia have accounted for around 50% of the people assessed under the new points test.
Mr Ruddock said that while it appears the additional 5,000 place contingency reserve established under the Skill Stream for use by employers, regional authorities and state/territory governments will not be used in 1999-00, the reserve will be maintained in 2000-01.
The Minister encouraged state/territory governments, employers and authorities, particularly those in regional Australia, to make greater efforts to use this reserve by, for example, sponsoring for permanent residence some of the 44,300 temporary residents currently in Australia with skills in demand such as nursing, IT and accounting.
"The increase in the Skill Stream will enable us to afford a small increase in the Family Stream," Mr Ruddock said.
Subject to adequate arrangements to minimise costs to the taxpayer, there will also be an
additional 4,000 place contingency reserve for aged parents - see separate news release.
Migration (Non-Humanitarian) Program 1999-2000 to 2000-2001
2000-2001 Planning Level
Spouse 24,000 24,600
Fiance 3,000 3,650
Child 2,350 2,770
Parent 500 500
Designated Parent* 610 1,600
Preferential 1,240 980
Interdependency 300 300
Total Family 32,000 34,400
SAL/SAS 8,400 5,950
ENS/Labour/RSMS** 6,000 5,800
Business Skills 6,000 6,700
Distinguished Talent 200 170
1 November 100 30
Total Skill 35,000 40,000
SPECIAL ELIGIBILITY STREAM
Former Citizens/Residents 350 350
Resolution of Status 2,650 1,250
Total Special Eligibility 3,000 1,600
TOTAL 70,000 76,000
* This is a new parent category announced in October 1999 to cover those parents who had applied in the parent category that was disallowed by the Senate on 31 March 1999.
This will be separate from the 4,000 place contingency reserve for aged parents which, as mentioned above, is subject to adequate arrangements to minimise costs to the taxpayer.
** Planning levels for these categories would be increased (against the contingency reserve of 5,000 places), if there were sufficient increased demand through State Specific migration initiatives and targeted nominations from business/employers under the Employer Nomination Scheme and Labour Agreements categories.
3 April 2000 Media Enquiries: Steve Ingram 0419 278 715
MPS 035/2000 - Humanitarian Intake for 2000-2001 MPS 036/2000 - 4,000 Place Contingency Reserve for Migration of Parents MPS 037/2000 - Population Issues: Impact of 2000-2001 Immigration Intake MPS 038/2000 - Migration Occupations in Demand List