The visa affected, the 457, was meant to attract more skilled workers to Australia and allows its holders to bring family members with them on a 457 secondary visa. A new visa program will be formulated in its place with the aim of recruiting only the best and the brightest from around the world.
Australia's Prime Minister, Malcom Turnbull, [official website] announced [video] Tuesday that the country will be introducing stricter visa requirements for skilled foreign workers. "This is about jobs for Australians", Turnbull said. The UK and China account for 19.5% and 5.8%, respectively, of the foreign worker labor market in Australia. According to an estimate, some 95,000 foreign workers are employed in Australia under this visa program.
It's been less than a day since Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the Government was abolishing the 457 visa and the repercussions are slowly being realised. "This is about putting Australians first for Australian jobs", said the PM, promising that the changes will not affect current 457 visa holders. "Australia is the most successful multicultural nation in the world".
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The 457 visa, which runs for up to four years, is now used by 95,000 foreign workers.
There are now 95,758 persons in Australia on the 457 visa.
"The high and increasing numbers of IT professionals are being granted 457 visas".
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A list of 52 jobs have been published that the Government intends to review and likely remove from the skills eligable for the new visas - spray painters and panel beaters are not on this list.
The new visas will require applicants to have previous work experience.
Instead of the 457 visas, a new temporary visa will be implemented which will be specifically created to "recruit the best and brightest" in their fields to target particular skill shortages in Australian industries.
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The One Nation leader, Pauline Hanson, was quick to claim that the government's announcement was prompted by her party's anti-immigration stance. But Turnbull has alleged that it was misused by employers to hire cheap labour. "Are they employing mature aged workers who have found themselves out of a job elsewhere?" he said on the Nine Network.