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Monday, 26 November 2018
Page: 11282


Dear Mrs Wicks

Thank you for your correspondence of 21 May 2018 on behalf of the Standing Committee on Petitions regarding petition number EN0547. Your correspondence has been referred to me as the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs as the matter falls within my portfolio responsibilities.

This petition requests the Australian Government consider granting access to permanent residency for Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) visa holders after two years if their occupation is listed on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) and they were granted their subclass 457 visa after 18 April 2018.

On 18 April 2017, the Government announced that the subclass 457 visa would be abolished and replaced with the new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa.

On 18 March 2018, the TSS visa was introduced, along with complementary reforms to permanent employer sponsored visas.

The visa reforms implemented in March 2018 are designed to ensure Australian workers have priority for Australian jobs, and strengthen the integrity and quality of our skilled visa programmes. This included extending the period a subclass 457 or TSS visa holder must have worked for their employer in Australia from two to three years to be eligible to apply for permanent employer-sponsored visas in the Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) streams.

The Government has taken steps to mitigate the impact on people who held existing subclass 457 visas on the date of announcement, 18 April 2017, by enabling them to access special arrangements which ensure the previous two-year requirement continues to apply to them. Further, the Direct Entry streams of the permanent employer-sponsored visas continue to be available to anyone who meets the visa requirements, and do not require a residence period.

Thank you for bringing petition EN0547 to my attention.

Yours sincerely

from the Minister For Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs, Mr Coleman