Positive moves for liberalisation of working holiday visas

November 24, 2015

Changes to working holiday visas have been included in the Developing Northern Australia White Paper, which was announced by the Federal Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Peter Dutton earlier this month.

The first change took effect from this month, with Working Holiday (Subclass 417) and Work and Holiday (Subclass 462) visa holders now being eligible to work for 12 months with the one employer, compared to a previous maximum of 6 months. The changes will only apply to ‘Northern Australia’ areas, including NT, Queensland and WA, but it is an encouraging start given that TAA and AHA have emphasised that regional and remote areas were most in need of temporary skilled migration visa liberalisation.

The second proposed change, which is likely to commence in mid 2016, will extend the 12 month visa to 24 months for certain countries eligible under the Work and Holiday Visa (Subclass 462) e.g. USA, Indonesia, Malaysia, Spain, Portugal.

TAA and AHA have made strong representations to Government concerning 457 visas and working holiday visas, highlighting the massive expansion of hotels currently in the development pipeline, which will contribute significantly to the need for an additional 123,000 tourism and hospitality workers, including 60,000 skilled workers, over the next five years.

The White Paper can be accessed by clicking here