Growth in business visa programmes will be prioritised and over $300 million will be saved through changes to Australia's 2014-15 migration programme, Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, the Hon Scott Morrison, said on Tuesday, 13 May 2014.
'The Abbott Government is ensuring our migration programme matches the nation's economic and skills needs while also contributing to a cohesive and strong community,' Minister Morrison said.
'This Budget allocates almost 68 per cent of Australia's migration places to skilled migration, and reprioritises employer-sponsored visas.
'With the reprioritisation towards employer-sponsored visas, employers will be assisted in finding workers to fill vital positions where they have been unable to find local workers. This also protects Australian workers, who will have less direct competition from independent migrants who arrive without a guaranteed job.
'The 2014-15 migration program provides a total of 190 000 places including 128 550 for skilled migration, 60 885 places for family migration and 565 places for migration under the special eligibility stream.
'The family stream will see more places being allocated for partners and children which together increase by 335 places, in recognition of the strong social and economic benefits of close family reunion, while the number of places in the contributory parent category has also been increased by 500 places.
'The additional 4 000 places in the family stream which the previous government allocated to illegal maritime arrivals have been removed, resulting in a saving of around $267 million.
'This change will provide yet another disincentive for people considering the dangerous boat journey to Australia.
'Changes to the skilled and family stream intakes will provide approximately $35 million in savings,' Minister Morrison said.
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[eduaid Newsdesk, Source: Click here to view the media release]