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3416.0 - Perspectives on Migrants, 2009  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/04/2009   
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TEMPORARY MIGRANTS IN AUSTRALIA

On this page:
INTRODUCTION
TEMPORARY MIGRATION
TEMPORARY MIGRANTS
PATHWAY TO PERMANENT RESIDENCY
LIST OF REFERENCES


INTRODUCTION

This article provides an overview of the temporary migration program and broadly explains the types of temporary visas that exist and the differences between them. A variety of data were used in the preparation of this article, most of which is available from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) website: http://www.immi.gov.au/.

It is important to note that the analysis contained in this article is the outcome of an administrative process, and there are advantages and disadvantages in using administrative data. Any changes to systems or policy can affect the data. More importantly, this is a discussion about the numbers of visas granted rather than an actual count of people entering or leaving. For example, visitors are the largest group of temporary entrants in terms of visas granted and although they are here for short periods of time, they can make other areas of the temporary migration program appear small and insignificant by comparison. A related issue is that some visas granted may not actually be utilised.

It should also be noted that in cases where source country or country of citizenship data is presented, the data is referring to the country of the passport the applicant is holding rather than their country of birth.


TEMPORARY MIGRATION

Temporary migration allows individuals from overseas to enter Australia on a temporary basis to work, study or holiday. The aims of temporary migration programs include allowing skilled people to work in Australia, contributing to economic growth, and tourists, students and working holiday makers contributing to social, cultural, economic and international relations.

The graph below identifies the various subgroups that contribute to temporary migration and presents quarterly data on the number of temporary entrants present in Australia to June 2008. These numbers change constantly according to demand and seasonal factors: for example, more tourists in the December quarter, more students in March, and fewer tourists in June. However, they do give a sense of the contribution that temporary entrants make towards the total number of people in Australia at any given time, and in fact, temporary migrants in Australia here longer than 12 months (over a 16 month period) are included in Australia’s resident population estimates (DIAC 2007c; ABS 2007).

Temporary migrants present in Australia - June 2006 to June 2008
Temporary migrants present in Australia, June 2006 to June 2008


While New Zealand citizens form a substantial component of temporary entrants, they are not discussed in this article. This is because New Zealand citizens can travel to Australia without the need to apply for a visa provided they have a valid New Zealand passport and no criminal convictions or medical conditions. While generally it is possible to know how many New Zealanders come and go in Australia, less is known about where they live and what they do while they are here.

In 2007-08, over 4 million temporary entry visas were granted, three quarters of which were for non-business visitors or tourists. The remaining quarter were made up of Business Visitors (418,250); Overseas Students (278,184); Working Holiday visas (154,148); and Skilled Long Stay Temporary Business visas (110,570). In contrast, there were 206,135 permanent visas granted under the permanent migration program during the same period. Over the last three years the number of permanent resident visas granted has increased by 14% (25,274 permanent visas) while the number of temporary entry visas granted has risen by 6% (or 218,940 temporary visas). See article Permanent Migration to Australia - An Overview by Eligibility Category, for more information about historical trends in Australia's migration.

Visas granted - 2005-06 to 2007-08

2005-06
2006-07
2007-08

Temporary

Non-business visitors(a)
3 195 039
3 223 010
3 191 678
Business Visitors
368 333
404 790
418 250
Student
190 674
228 590
278 184
Working Holiday Makers
111 973
134 610
154 148
Business (Long Stay)
71 150
87 310
110 570
Others(b)
41 251
43 190
44 530
Total
3 978 420
4 121 500
4 197 360

Permanent

Skill Stream
97 340
97 920
108 540
Family Stream
45 290
50 080
49 870
Special Eligibility Stream
310
200
220
NZ settlers(c)
23 781
28 307
34 491
Humanitarian
14 140
13 017
13 014
Total
180 861
189 524
206 135

(a) Includes visa for tourists, sponsored family visitors and visitors for prearranged medical treatment
(b) Other temporary visas include social/cultural, international relations, educational and medical practitioner visas
(c) Estimated by permanent arrivals of NZ citizens
Source: DIAC 2008c, 2007c; DIAC Visitor Visa Statistics; Reserve Bank of Australia 2007

Visitors

Visitors are the largest contributor to temporary migration and they come to Australia for a variety of reasons, such as tourism, friend or family visits, short term business, or pre-arranged medical treatment. There is a number of Visitor visas available varying in length from 3 to 12 months duration and they generally do not permit applicants to work while visiting Australia. Included are the following main visa subclasses:
  • Tourist (subclasses 676; e676; 976; 651; 679);
  • Business (subclasses 977; 956; 651; 456; 459);
  • Other (subclasses 675; 685).

Visitors' contribution to the temporary migration program

The table below shows the number of Visitor visas granted between 2003-04 and 2007-08. Visitors account for the largest number of temporary visas granted (3.6 million in 2007-08 or 87% of total temporary visas granted). Of that figure, 3.2 million were Tourist visas, a figure which has remained fairly stable over the 5 year time period. The biggest change over the five years has been in the number of Business Visitor visas granted, increasing from 298,840 in 2003-04, to 418,250 in 2007-08. Business Visitor visas accounted for 12% of total Visitor visas granted in 2007-08. Increases in both the Short Stay Business visa (456) (up 40% over the 5 year period) and the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) Business Short Validity visa (977) (up 58% over the 5 year period) have accounted for the rise in business visas granted over time. In addition, there were 2.8 million ETAs granted in 2007-08 with most of them being ETA Visitor visas (2.6 million), possibly reflecting more electronic processing being undertaken by DIAC.

Visitor visa grants - 2003-04 to 2007-08

2003-04
2004-05
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08

Business Visitor Visas
Short Stay Business Visitor (456) and Sponsored Business Visitor (459)
147 706
174 724
186 290
199 516
207 054
ETA Business Entrant Long Validity (956)
24 721
18 417
15 410
13 475
11 670
ETA Business Entrant Short Validity (977)
126 413
146 283
166 633
191 804
199 526
Total Business Visitor Visa Grants
298 840
339 424
368 333
404 795
418 250
Tourist Visas(a)
Short Stay Tourist (676) and Long Stay Tourist (686)
442 611
452 247
482 832
541 343
627 378
Sponsored Family Visitor (679)
9 665
10 655
10 405
14 123
19 686
ETA Visitor (976)
2 733 463
2 805 203
2 720 206
2 687 625
2 565 190
Total Tourist Visa Grants
3 185 739
3 268 105
3 213 443
3 243 091
3 212 254
Other Visitor Visas
4 659
4 553
4 293
3 879
3 280
Total Visitor Visa Grants
3 489 238
3 612 082
3 586 069
3 651 765
3 633 784

(a) Includes non-business visitors and selected other tourists
Source: DIAC, Visitor Visa Statistics


Where do visitors come from?

The table below details total Offshore Visitor visa grants by country of citizenship, between 2003-04 and 2007-08. The table shows that visitors to Australia are predominantly from the United Kingdom (UK), Japan, United States of America (USA), China and Korea and that this has not changed greatly over this period. In 2007-08 the largest number of Visitor visas were granted to people from the UK (631,900) accounting for 18% of all Visitor visas granted. Japan was the next largest (464,878 or 13%), followed by the USA (400,906 or 11%) and China (261,016 or 7%). The number of Visitor visas granted to people from the UK and the USA has remained relatively steady over the 5 year period with 647,613 (UK) and 377,875 (USA) in 2003-04 and 631,900 (UK) and 400,906 (USA) in 2007-08 respectively. For China, the number of Visitor visas granted has increased by 98,230 (60%), while for Japan, the opposite has occurred, with a fall of almost 170,000 Visitor visas granted (27%) over the same 5 year period.

Offshore Visitor visa grants, By country of citizenship - 2003-04 to 2007-08

2003-04
2004-05
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08

Canada
89 911
97 354
98 381
101 276
114 457
China, Peoples Republic of
162 786
195 906
206 756
239 045
261 016
France
90 873
93 982
97 940
101 505
112 143
Germany, Federal Republic of
133 540
136 407
136 406
138 230
144 852
Hong Kong (SAR of China)
61 715
73 738
76 158
66 862
63 581
India
51 428
56 308
70 499
75 116
88 994
Indonesia
59 265
50 925
53 156
57 868
61 080
Japan
634 629
642 994
616 650
556 453
464 878
Korea, Republic of
203 880
223 002
215 871
235 186
197 450
Malaysia
147 340
138 688
121 216
126 030
134 819
Singapore
142 448
148 502
122 980
128 422
129 364
Taiwan
88 662
88 870
85 579
75 025
67 933
United Kingdom
647 613
655 271
651 077
674 771
631 900
United States of America
377 875
385 827
389 062
385 384
400 906
Total
2 891 965
2 987 774
2 941 731
2 961 173
2 873 373
Total all countries
3 461 939
3 589 031
3 563 372
3 627 803
3 609 928

Source: DIAC Visitor Visa Statistics

This general pattern differs, however, for Short Stay Business Visitors (visa classes 456 and 459) who came mostly from China (81,481 in 2007-08), the USA (58,145), the UK (35,283), India (25,175) and Japan (23,998) in 2007-08.

Main source countries for Short Stay Business Visitors - 2005-06 to 2007-08
Main source countries for Short Stay Business Visitors, 2005-06 to 2007-08


TEMPORARY MIGRANTS

Aside from visitors, there are a range of other temporary residents who form part of Australia's temporary migration program. These persons migrate to Australia, either alone or with their families to live and work. Some come independently and some are employer sponsored. The remainder of this article will concentrate on temporary migrants.

Generally, temporary migrants pay tax on any earnings they make in Australia. They do not have access to the Medicare health system or any social welfare benefits that are available to permanent residents. There is also particular character and health requirements that they need to meet depending on the conditions that are attached to their particular temporary visa (DIAC 2007c, 2008a).

There are three main categories of temporary migrants that are discussed in this article:
  • Working Holiday Makers;
  • Students; and
  • Business Migrants.

Working Holiday Makers

The Working Holiday Makers (WHM) program is a cultural exchange program designed to deliver both social and economic benefits to Australia. It is designed to be particularly helpful to regional employers in providing short term casual employment to industries such as hospitality and rural industries. The program enables young people aged 18 to 30 years, without dependent children, to work while they travel (DIAC 2007c). The two visas available are:
  • The Working Holiday visa (subclass 417); and
  • The Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462).

Working holiday makers' contribution to the temporary migration program

In 2007-08 there were 154,148 Working Holiday visas granted (up 15% from 134,612 in 2006-07) and 3,426 Work and Holiday visas granted. This is a fairly small number of visas granted when compared to the temporary migration program overall. These visas combined account for 27% of temporary visa grants (when visitors are excluded).

The graph below shows the total number of Working Holiday visas granted over the last 8 years. Over this period the number granted has doubled. Some of this growth may be attributed to an increase in the number of participating countries and more flexible visa arrangements. Specifically, the length of time with any one employer has been extended from 3 months to 6 months, working holiday makers are allowed to study in Australia for up to 4 months and there is the option (for subclass 417 visa holders only) of applying for a second working holiday visa provided they have worked in specific industries in regional Australia (DIAC 2007c).

Working Holiday Maker visa grants(a) - 2000-01 to 2007-08
Working Holiday Maker visa grants, 2000-01 to 2007-08


Where do working holiday makers come from?

The graph below shows that the main source country for Working Holiday visa grants in 2007-08 was the UK with 34,145 visas granted or 22% of the total number of 417 visas granted. While the UK has remained the dominant source country for working holiday makers over this time, there have been some interesting increases in the number of visas granted to working holiday makers from other countries. For example, over the 5 year period, Working Holiday grants from Korea have increased by 243%, from 9,513 in 2003-04 to 32,635 in 2007-08. In addition, there was an increase of 80% in the number of visa grants to persons from Germany (9,672 in 2003-04 to 17,438 in 2007-08) and visa grants to persons from France increased (from 1,601 to 11,005 over the same 5 year period).

Working Holiday (417) visa grants, By top countries in 2007-08 - 2003-04 to 2007-08
Working Holiday (417) visa grants, By top countries in 2007-08, 2003-04 to 2007-08


Students

The student visa program aims to promote and grow Australia's education services overseas by allowing overseas students to study full-time in Australia in registered courses. There are several different types of Student visas available, broadly reflecting the different sectors of Australia's education industry. They are:
  • The English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS) sector temporary visa (570);
  • The Schools sector temporary visa (571);
  • The Vocational Education and Training sector temporary visa (572);
  • The Higher Education sector temporary visa (573);
  • The Postgraduate Research sector temporary visa (574);
  • The Non-award sector temporary visa (575); and
  • The AusAID and Defence sponsored sector temporary visa (576) (DIAC 2007c).

These visas allow students to stay in Australia for the duration of their course and permit multiple entries to Australia. Students are able to work up to 20 hours per week during the semester and unlimited hours during the end of semester breaks. All overseas students must apply for their first visa offshore (DIAC, Fact Sheet 50).

Students' contribution to the temporary migration program

In 2007-08 there were 278,184 Student visas granted, a 22% increase on 2006-07 (228, 592). Overseas students accounted for 47% of the temporary migration program (excluding visitors), a 1% increase on the previous two years (46% in both 2005-06 and 2006-07). By educational sector, the largest increases in visa grants in 2007-08 were in the Vocational Education and Training sector (up by 24,978 grants or 58%) and the Higher Education sector (up by 19,306 grants or 17%). The Higher Education sector accounted for 47% of all Student visas granted in 2007-08.

The table below shows the total number of Student visas granted from 2002-03 to 2007-08, by educational sector. Over that 6 year period the number of Student visas granted has increased by 71%. The Higher Education sector has remained the largest over that time period while the number of Student visas granted in this sector since 2002-03 has increased by 140%. Conversely, visas granted in the Postgraduate Research sector have fallen by 25,282 (78%) since 2002-03.

Student visa grants, By education sector - 2002-03 to 2007-08

2002-03
2003-04
2004-05
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08

ELICOS (570)
21 967
22 368
22 642
26 683
30 115
30 545
Schools / Secondary Exchange (571)
14 795
14 527
12 611
12 659
16 222
16 976
VET (572)
25 508
24 722
25 187
29 942
43 404
68 382
Higher Education (573)
54 331
54 890
82 116
93 732
110 821
130 127
Postgraduate Research (574)
32 217
37 362
11 008
5 510
5 810
6 935
Non Award (575) / Other
10 006
14 067
17 668
17 573
17 618
20 698
AusAID / Defence (576)
3 751
3 680
3 554
4 575
4 602
4 521
Total
162 575
171 616
174 786
190 674
228 592
278 184

Source: DIAC Student Visa Statistics


Where do overseas students come from?

The graph below shows the change in grants over time for the top five source countries for Student visas in 2007-08. Of particular note are the increases in visa grants for both China and India over the period. For China, Student visa grants increased by 19,793 (66%) from 29,970 in 2005-06 to 49,763 in 2007-08. For India, there was an increase of 27,366 grants (135%) from 20,273 in 2005-06 to 47,639 in 2007-08. The numbers of visa grants from each of these countries was more than double the next largest source country, Korea in 2007-08. In 2003-04, the main source countries for Student visa grants were China (27,829), Korea (14,375) and Japan (12,886). For further information on overseas students see Perspectives on Migrants, 2007, Overseas Students (ABS cat. no. 3416.0).

Student visa grants by country of citizenship, By top countries in 2007-08 - 2003-04 to 2007-08
Student visa grants by country of citizenship, By top countries in 2007-08, 2003-04 to 2007-08


Business migrants

Skilled temporary migrants or business people come to Australia to either work for Australian employers or to explore new business opportunities in the Australian economy. The intention of the program is for approved Australian employers to be able to fill skilled vacancies in their workforce that they have been unable to fill from the local labour supply.

There are three visas available that enable skilled migrants with sought after qualifications, skills or experience, to work in Australia. They are:
  • The Temporary Business (Long Stay) visa (457);
  • The Medical Practitioner visa (422); and
  • The Educational visa (418).

These business visas are all valid for up to 4 years and visa holders can enter and leave Australia any number of times after they have arrived. These temporary migrants are not able to access Medicare or social welfare benefits. Minimum skill and salary requirements exist for employer sponsored migrants in line with Australian workplace laws, as well as English language proficiency, health, and good character requirements. Regional or low population growth areas may benefit from these visas as the selection requirements may have lower thresholds if a migrant opts to live and work in such an area. Skilled temporary migrants must fill management; professional; or skilled tradesperson positions (DIAC 2007c).

Business migrants' contribution to the temporary migration program

The Business (Long Stay) visa (457) is the main temporary skilled visa and in 2007-08, there were 110,570 of these visas granted. In 2007-08, visa grants increased 27% on 2006-07 (87,310) which itself was 23% above the level of visas granted in 2005-06 (71,150). This program has increased over the last few years as a result of demand from employers to fill skill shortages in the local economy, and as the graph below shows, the number of 457 visa grants over the last seven years between 2001-02 and 2007-08, more than tripled. In addition, this increase has been occurring at an almost equal rate for both primary applicants (the applicant who must satisfy the primary criteria for the grant of a visa) and secondary applicants (the dependents of the primary applicant) (DIAC 2008a). See article Migrant Characteristics and Settlement Outcomes of Secondary Applicants, for further details about secondary applicants. In relation to the temporary migration program, the Business (Long Stay) visa accounts for about 19% of the program (excluding visitors).

Business (Long Stay) visa grants, 2001-02 to 2007-08
Business (Long Stay) visa grants, By applicant type, 2001-02 to 2007-08


Where do business migrants come from?

The graph below shows that the main country of citizenship for temporary 457 visa holders in 2007-08 was the UK with 13,110 primary applicant visas granted and 10,660 secondary applicant visas granted. The UK accounted for 22% of all 457 visas granted in 2007-08. The second largest source country was India, accounting for 14% with 8,250 primary applicants and 6,870 secondary applicants. South Africa was the third highest source country (8% of the total) which interestingly had more visas granted for secondary applicants (6,080) than primary applicants (3,260). The top source countries graphed below account for 64% of all 457 visas granted (70,630) and are similar to the main source countries for permanent skilled migrants who tend to come primarily from the UK, followed by India, then China and South Africa.

Top countries for Business (Long Stay) visa grants, By applicant type - 2007-08
Top citizenship countries for Business (Long Stay) visa grants, By applicant type, 2007-08


Where are skilled temporary migrants going and what are their employment characteristics?

As the table below indicates most temporary 457 visas granted are for positions that are located in New South Wales (32%), Western Australia (22%), Victoria (20%) and Queensland (18%). These four states account for 92% of all 457 visas granted. Interestingly, although Western Australia accounts for 10% of Australia's population, 22% of the 457 visas granted are for positions in that State, the second highest preferred location after New South Wales.

Business (Long Stay) visa grants, By location of position and applicant type - 2007-08

Primary Grants
Secondary Grants
Total Grants
% of Total Grants
State / Territory Relative Size as % of Population

NSW
20 480
15 080
35 560
32
33
Vic.
11 750
10 570
22 320
20
25
Qld
9 810
10 120
19 930
18
20
WA
11 800
12 210
24 010
22
10
SA
1 930
2 150
4 070
4
7
Tas.
450
440
890
1
2
NT
910
800
1 720
2
1
ACT
720
660
1 380
1
2
Total(a)
58 050
52 520
110 570
100
100

(a) Total includes location not specified
Source: DIAC 2008d; ABS 2008

The following tables examine the employment industries and major occupation groups of 457 visa entrants in the four states that had the highest number of visas granted in 2007-08. For New South Wales, employers in the Communication services industry were the main sponsors of 457 migrants, accounting for 17% of that State's visa grants.

Business (Long Stay) visa grants to primary applicants, By industry of sponsor - 2007-08

New South Wales
% of Total Aust.
Victoria
% of Total Aust.
Queensland
% of Total Aust.
Western Australia
% of Total Aust.
Total States
Total Aust.

Communication services
3 520
68
1 160
22
240
5
160
3
5 080
5 200
Construction
1 370
24
510
9
1 530
27
1 930
34
5 340
5 690
Finance and insurance
2 140
68
620
20
150
5
190
6
3 100
3 150
Health and community services
2 720
30
2 100
23
1 960
22
1 150
13
7 930
9 090
Manufacturing
1 170
21
1 210
22
1 220
22
1 480
27
5 080
5 480
Mining
320
7
310
6
840
17
3 100
63
4 570
4 890
Personal and other services
1 810
46
970
24
590
15
510
13
3 880
3 970
Property and business services
2 810
47
2 030
34
520
9
510
8
5 870
6 020
Total above industries
15 860
36
8 910
20
7 050
16
9 030
21
40 850
43 490
Total all industries
20 480
35
11 750
20
9 810
17
11 800
20
53 840
58 050

Source: DIAC 2008d

For Western Australia, however, the demand for overseas labour was mostly in the mining industry which accounts for 26% of that State's 457 visa grants and 63% of all 457 visas in the mining industry nationally. The majority of the visas granted are for nominated positions in the Professional (4,920 or 42%) and the Tradespersons and related workers (3,840 or 33%) occupations.

Business (Long Stay) visa grants to primary applicants, By ASCO major group - 2007-08

New South Wales
% of Total Aust.
Victoria
% of Total Aust.
Queensland
% of Total Aust.
Western Australia
% of Total Aust.
Total States
Total Aust.

Managers and administrators
2 600
47
1 140
21
660
12
900
16
5 300
5 520
Professionals
13 530
40
8 160
24
4 960
15
4 920
15
31 570
33 890
Associate professionals
2 540
33
1 190
16
1 440
19
1 920
25
7 090
7 590
Tradespersons and related Workers
1 760
17
1 250
12
2 330
23
3 840
38
9 180
10 060
Total above ASCO groups
20 430
36
11 740
21
9 390
16
11 580
20
53 140
57 060
Total all ASCO groups
20 480
35
11 750
20
9 810
17
11 800
20
53 840
58 050

Source: DIAC 2008d

The remaining temporary business visas are the Business Development Provisional Visas that are available to business people to establish a business in Australia, manage a new or existing business, or invest in Australia. They include:
  • The Business Owner Provisional visa (160) and the State/Territory Sponsored Business Owner Provisional visa (163);
  • The Senior Executives Provisional visa (161) and the State/Territory Sponsored Senior Executive Provisional visa (164);
  • The Investor Provisional visa (162) and the State/Territory Sponsored Investor Provisional visa (165);
  • The Investor Retirement visa (405); and
  • The Independent Executive Further Application Onshore visa (457IEFAO).

These visas, other than the Investor Retirement visa (405), offer applicants a direct path to permanent residence after a minimum of two years (DIAC, Visas, Immigration and Refugees).

PATHWAY TO PERMANENT RESIDENCY

This section focuses on the extent to which temporary migrants become permanent residents. While relevant data are less readily available, there is some permanent additions data that shows the numbers of temporary migrants who convert to permanent residents while they are already onshore.

Increasingly temporary migrants are opting to apply for permanent residency while in Australia, as can be seen from the graph below. The skilled migration scheme accounted for 74% of all onshore additions to the resident population in 2007-08 and this is a trend that has been increasing over the last few years.

Onshore permanent additions, By migration eligibility category - 2002-03 to 2007-08
Onshore permanent additions, By migration eligibility category, 2002-03 to 2007-08


Under the skilled migration stream there are a range of visa categories that allow temporary students and long stay business migrants in particular, to apply for permanent residency. The table below shows that the Employer Nominated and the Independent Schemes are the predominant visa categories for onshore permanent additions and over time their percentage of the total skill stream permanent additions has remained relatively stable. In 2007-08 permanent additions through the Employer Nominated visa category were mostly onshore (82%) and this is consistent with the proportion of onshore additions over the previous five years. For the Independent visa category 33% of permanent additions were onshore, again consistent with previous years' data. The Australian Sponsored visa category (which allows applicants to be sponsored by a family member who is either an Australian citizen or permanent resident or to be nominated by a state or territory government) has had increasing onshore additions over time, ranging from 9% in 2002-03 to 26% in 2007-08.

Onshore permanent additions, By skill stream eligibility category - 2002-03 to 2007-08

2002-03
2003-04
2004-05
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08

Number of onshore permanent additions

Australian Sponsored
449
949
1 044
1 388
1 547
2 197
Regional Designated Area Sponsored
303
654
760
1 023
1 043
1 392
Employer Nomination Scheme
7 761
8 377
10 428
12 003
12 994
18 836
Business Skills
1 715
1 645
1 588
1 648
1 798
1 162
Distinguished Talents
119
133
104
58
122
99
Independent
7 916
11 559
14 720
15 537
20 322
17 917
Other(a)
15
5
116
337
337
462
Total onshore permanent additions
18 278
23 322
28 760
31 994
38 163
42 065

Proportion of total skill stream permanent additions (%)

Australian Sponsored
9
13
13
15
23
26
Regional Designated Area Sponsored
11
9
11
12
12
21
Employer Nomination Scheme
82
80
81
80
79
82
Business Skills
24
24
25
28
27
18
Distinguished Talents
65
60
53
53
58
46
Independent
25
27
32
34
38
33
Other(a)
na
na
19
5
4
6
Total onshore permanent additions
32
31
35
35
39
39

(a) Other includes STNI, SIR/RS and 1 Nov Onshore
Source: DIAC 2008b, 2007b, 2005b

Students

Overseas students are able to apply for permanent residency via a range of onshore general skilled migration visa categories provided they meet certain visa requirements. See article Skilled Migration, for further details. They are able to apply on successful completion of their studies without having to leave Australia, provided they do so within 6 months of completing their Australian qualifications. In 2006-07 there were 22,858 onshore permanent residence visas granted to skilled students, 23% of the total number of permanent skilled visas granted (97,920) (DIAC 2007c). In 2007-08, there were 21,421 permanent visas granted to overseas students, 20% of the total number of permanent skilled visas granted (108,540) (DIAC 2008c).

Business migrants

There are a number of provisional business visas that allow overseas residents with the appropriate skills, capital and interest, to come to Australia, pursue a business venture and in the process qualify and be granted permanent residency. Skilled temporary migrants holding a 457 visa are also able to apply for permanent residency at the completion of their placement, through either employer sponsorship or by applying for permanent residency independently. See article Skilled Migration, for further details.

In recent years the incidence of transfer from temporary to provisional or permanent visa type has doubled as shown in the figure below. In 2007-08, there were 24,960 permanent resident or provisional visas granted to people who last held a subclass 457 visa and 88% of those applied under the Employer Nomination Scheme, Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme, Labour Agreement or Skilled Independent visa programs (DIAC 2008a). That figure represents 12% of the total number of permanent visas granted and 23% of the skilled stream permanent visas granted (108, 540).

Permanent and provisional visa grants, Where a 457 visa was last held(a) - 2001-02 to 2007-08
Permanent and provisional visa grants, Where a 457 visa was last held, 2001-02 to 2007-08


LIST OF REFERENCES

ABS 2007, Information Paper: Statistical Implications of Improved Methods for Estimating Net Overseas Migration, Australia, 2007, cat. no. 3107.0, ABS, Canberra.

ABS 2008, Population by Age and Sex, Australian States and Territories, June 2008, cat. no. 3201.0, ABS, Canberra.

DIAC 2008a, Annual report 2007-08, <http://www.immi.gov.au/about/reports/annual/>.

DIAC, Fact Sheet 49, viewed 1 December 2008, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/fact-sheets/>.

DIAC, Fact Sheet 50, viewed 2 December 2008, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/fact-sheets/>.

DIAC 2008b, Immigration Update 2007-08, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/publications/statistics/>.

DIAC 2007b, Immigration Update 2006-07, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/publications/statistics/>.

DIAC 2005b, Immigration Update, June 2005, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/publications/statistics/>.

DIAC 2008c, Population Flows - Immigration Aspects 2007-08, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/publications/statistics/>.

DIAC 2007c, Population Flows - Immigration Aspects 2006-07, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/publications/statistics/>.

DIAC, Student Visa Statistics, viewed 29 October 2008, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/statistics/study/>.

DIAC 2008d, Subclass 457 Business (Long Stay) - State/Territory Summary Report 2007-08, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/statistics/statistical-info/temp-entrants/subclass-457.htm>.

DIAC, Visas, Immigration and Refugees, viewed 28 January 2009, <http://www.immi.gov.au/skilled/business/provisional-visa-options.htm>.

DIAC, Visitor Visa Statistics, viewed 29 October 2008, <http://www.immi.gov.au/media/statistics/study/tempentstat.htm>

Reserve Bank of Australia 2007, Bulletin, September 2007, <http://www.rba.gov.au/PublicationsAndResearch/Bulletin/bu_sep07/immig_lab_supply.html>.



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