New changes in the Australian Skilled Graduate Visa Scheme announced
Foreign students who graduate in Australia will soon have the right to apply for a two to four-year graduate visa. The new immigration rules will be introduced at the end of next year. Up until now only students, who have graduated in fields for which there is high demand such as medicine, engineering, accounting and architecture had the opportunity to apply for a visa to Australia.
Under the new rules, students from all areas will have the right to apply for a graduate Australian visa. The number of foreign graduates currently in Australia is nearly 220 000. Graduates who have a bachelor’s degree will be eligible for a two-year visa. Students with a master degree will be eligible to apply for a three-year visa, while PhD graduates will be eligible to apply for a four-year visa.
In addition to their education, all applicants will be assessed on the basis of their English language skills, their health and will have to meet some security requirements as well. According to the immigration minister of Australia Chris Bowen, the new rules will enhance the international competitiveness of the Australian economy by attracting and retaining highly qualified foreign talents in the country.
Furthermore, the changes will be of great benefit to the Australian education sector whose worth is currently estimated to be nearly AU$18 billion. The new changes will not be linked to the skilled immigrant visa. Therefore applicants will not need to have a profession that is listed in SOL (Skilled Occupation List). The government, however, will reserve the right to modify the changes in the future in accordance with the economic and social conditions in the country.