The Australian Government has started a review of the skilled migration occupation lists, welcoming feedback from interested stakeholders, particularly those in regional areas.

Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, said the department review of the skilled migration occupation list was necessary to make sure it is responsive to genuine skill needs and regional variations across Australia.

“As a Government, our role is to ensure that Australian employers can access workers with the skills needed to fill the jobs of today and tomorrow when they can’t be met by the domestic workforce,” Minister Cash said.

Minister Cash stressed that the Morrison Government’s skilled migration policies were anchored on the principle that Australian workers are given first priority for jobs.

“As part of the review, my department will consult with industry, employers, unions and individuals in developing advice for the Morrison Government on the occupations required to meet the labour market needs of the Australian economy,” Minister Cash said.

According to Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, the Hon David Coleman MP, the Government’s migration program is geared towards ensuring that employers can access workers to fill critical skills shortages, particularly in regional Australia.

“We’ve allocated 23,000 regional migration places, introduced two new regional visas and signed Designated Area Migration Agreements around the country to attract migrants to the regions, help towns grow and to fill some of the 60,000 job vacancies in regional Australia,” Minister Coleman said.

“The Morrison Government is continuing to look closely at ways of filling these skills gaps in regional areas and giving businesses more certainty and confidence that they can get the workers they need when they need them.”

Occupation lists support a range of employer-sponsored, points tested and state-nominated visa programs. The next update to the skilled migration lists in March 2020 will reflect the results of said review.

Indicative timeline of review for skilled migration occupation list

4 September 2019– Commence review
– Commence consultation
December 2019– Publish Traffic Light Bulletin outlining outcomes of initial
labour market analysis, stakeholder consultation and views
from across government. The purpose of the Traffic Light
Bulletin is to identify which occupations have been flagged
for a change in status on one of the lists
– Formal submission period opens
February 2020– Formal submission period closes
March 2020– End review

For further details on the consultation process, including a timeline of the review process, visit the


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