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Working holiday maker visa - Meeting the needs of growers in Queensland.

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Working Holiday Maker Visa - Meeting the Needs of Growers in Queensland

Queensland growers will have access to more Working Holiday Makers, as a result of changes starting from 1 November 2005, the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs, Amanda Vanstone, said today.

‘The Australian Government is offering a second, 12-month Working Holiday Maker visa to working holiday makers who have done at least three months seasonal harvest work in regional Australia,’ Senator Vanstone said.

‘At the moment, Working Holiday Makers are only eligible for one of these visas in a lifetime.

‘The scheme provides a strong incentive to working holiday makers to go out and do harvest work throughout Queensland, but particularly areas like Bowen, Mareeba, Bundaberg, Gatton, St George, Stanthorpe and Atherton - in fact anywhere that needs seasonal labour.’

The expansion of the WHM program will help growers in Queensland and give working holiday makers an opportunity to stay an extra year to see more of Australia, providing a boost to tourism industries.

‘Many farmers have told me that Working Holiday Makers are amongst their most valuable workers because of their mobility and enthusiasm,’ Senator Vanstone said.

During the last financial year, over 100 000 working holiday makers visited Australia. Research shows that about 15 per cent of WHMs do harvest work during their stay. The changes aim to substantially increase this number.

Working holiday makers will be expected to provide proof of their harvest work. Farmers may be asked to sign a form, or provide a reference, to verify work done on their farm. The Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs may contact growers to check the details provided by the working holiday maker.

Working holiday maker visa applications may be lodged over the Internet. Visit

31 October 2005

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