Australia will fast-track work visas for skilled workers
Similarly to Canada, which is about to start recruiting Irish workers, Australia is to fast-track work visas for foreign skilled workers.
Due to skill shortages in the mining and technology sectors, Australia came up with a plan to attract foreigners as applications for 457 work visas are fast-tracked.
In addition, the current three years for employer sponsorship will be increased to six.
Currently, the application process for 457 visas is 22 days on average, and the aim is to reduce the days to 10.
Businesses that wish to be included in the program, need to meet certain criteria: At least three-quarters of their domestic employees must be Australian.
They have been a 457 visa sponsor for the last three years, and have at least 30 overseas workers on 457 visas for the past 12 months.
For the period 2010-11, Australia granted 113,725 skilled migration visas compared to the 107,868 in 2009-10.
At present, India is the second of the top three source countries for permanent and temporary migration of skilled workers.
The 457 visa is the most used program for Australian or overseas employers to sponsor skilled foreign workers to temporarily work in Australia.
Those who are on visa 457 in Australia, can travel in and out of the country as many times as they wish.