Many potential migrants should be breathing a sigh of relief today as the sponsored South Australia visa program has removed just one occupation from the Permanent Sponsorship list.
This announcement comes after concerns that the changes would be far more severe, with these fears originally sparked as a result of the Minister of Immigration's announcement that the Department of Immigration & Citizenship (DIAC) will be cutting the skilled program by 14%. Many speculated that the individual States and Territories would soon follow suit and close their doors on potential migrants by making big changes to their sponsored visa programs.
Initial reports seemed to confirm this with Tasmania immediately suspending their processing of sponsorships on 17 March, pending a review of their policy due to be announced on 20 April. However, such dramatic changes were not made to South Australia's permanent sponsorship list, with the only change being the removal of one occupation from the South Australian Permanent Sponsorship list, which was:
Applicants who list this as their nominated occupation in the points test will no longer be eligible for permanent sponsorship by South Australia. Additionally, there have also been a number of occupations removed from the South Australian Provisional Sponsorship list:
Essentially, the changes were not as bad as initially feared and gaining sponsorship for a South Australia visa remains a very feasible reality for Australian migration hopefuls.
Additionally, after all the difficulties and confusion surrounding the new visa processing priorities, there's also some clarification on that front provided by Immigration SA; they have now officially stated that permanent sponsorship applications (i.e. for the Skilled Sponsored visa (subclass 176)) will be processed within 4 weeks and provisional sponsorship applications (i.e. for the Skilled Regional Sponsored visa (subclass 475)) will be processed within 6-8 weeks.
Any further changes to the sponsorship lists of South Australia or any other State/Territory will be reported by the Australian Visa Bureau as soon as we learn of them.
- Lauren Mennie is Casework Department Manager for the Australian Visa Bureau
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