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Australia wants Tradesmen (from November)

Tradesmen or Tradies as they are known in Australia are going to be one of the types of occupations to be major beneficiaries from some of the changes to be made to general skilled migration visa policy on 16 November. Three weeks of consultations in South Africa have made it ...

Myer

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Australia wants Tradesmen (from November)

Tradesmen or Tradies as they are known in Australia are going to be one of the types of occupations to be major beneficiaries from some of the changes to be made to general skilled migration visa policy on 16 November. Three weeks of consultations in South Africa have made it ...

Myer

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Australia wants Tradesmen (from November)

Posted by Myer on Sept. 27, 2019, 3:28 p.m. in Australia

Tradesmen or Tradies as they are known in Australia are going to be one of the types of occupations to be major beneficiaries from some of the changes to be made to general skilled migration visa policy on 16 November. Three weeks of consultations in South Africa have made it abundantly clear that it will be easier for Tradies to qualify for state-sponsored regional (work to residence) visas in Australia.

 

On 16 November the Australian government will introduce a new general skilled migration visa called the subclass 491 visa. It replaces the 489 visa and is essentially a state-sponsored provisional regional visa that does not require one to have a job offer. It’s not a permanent residence visa but leads to permanent residence when you satisfy the conditions of the 491 visa. It is essentially a work to residence visa where one is sponsored by a state government as opposed to an employer.

One needs to score 65 points for a general skilled migration visa and it has traditionally been difficult for tradesmen to reach this score. That, our analysis suggests, will change in November.

That’s principally because their qualifications, unlike degrees are only worth 10 points and not 15 and also because the English language test is academic in nature and not technical and most of the tradesmen are blessed with technical expertise. The point being we all have different strengths.

I once went on a golfing trip with some of my friends. We all had different occupations including lawyer, plumber, cardiologist and accountant. The external putter sleeve popped out of it’s mooring on my golf bag and the accountant, cardiologist and I tried for about 15 minutes to reconnect the sleeve at which point I had resigned myself to having to buy another golf bag when the plumber walked up, bent the putter tube and popped it into it’s mooring. We looked at him as if he had just walked on water.

I offer the example above as to how different occupations have different skill sets and ways to solve problems.

From November state sponsorship for the state-sponsored provisional (work to residence) regional visa is going to be worth 15 points as opposed to the current 10 points.

To give you a practical example if you use the example of a 35 year old plumber with at least 11 years of experience in the trade with average English-language ability he would, under current policy score the following points:

Age 25 points

Trade qualification 10 points

Work experience in the nominated trade occupation – 15 for eight or more years of work experience after considered suitably skilled

English-language – 0 points for competent English, 10 points for proficient English and 20 points for superior English. It’s not particularly easy to get 10 points for proficient English because points are given for the lowest of the four bands (reading, writing, listening and speaking) and not the overall score.

State sponsorship/support – 10 points for the state-sponsored provisional regional visa.

Total potential score = is 60 points which is 5 short of the current pass mark of 65 required to secure the visa.

Unless the electrician obtained 10 points for their English-language ability - a high bar which most cannot achieve - it’s not that common for tradesmen to reach this score because of the reasons mentioned above.

From November of this year however state sponsorship for this type of visa is worth 15 points and not 10 which means that our electrician could still obtain 0 points for English-language but reach the threshold of 65 points.

Australia is looking for tradies and that’s why their occupations appear on so many of the state government occupation ‘wish lists’, it’s just until now the government hasn’t been able to draft an immigration policy capable of providing them with a pathway to residence.

The biggest benefit of a general skilled migration visa is that it gives the holder full work rights as well as his spouse or partner if he has one and children can attend government schools without paying international student fees. With fewer employers wanting to “sponsor” workers for work visas the general skilled migration visa greatly improves employability. Tradesmen only have to search on recruitment related websites such as seek.com.au to see the vast number of jobs available for tradies. The ’chicken and egg’ still exists (no work visa no job but no job without the visa) - most employers and recruiters want applicants to have visas with work rights such as general skilled migration visas. This can really only be broken by being prepared to travel to Australia and stay till that one employer willing to play the visa game is found.

This type of general skilled migration visa isn’t a permanent residence visa but leads to permanent residence once our electrician lives in “regional” Australia for a period of three years (of a five year period) and earns an annual salary of AUD53,900 for each of those three years which isn’t a very high salary in Australia. 

On this type of visa you can’t live and work in metropolitan areas of Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Gold Coast but the rest of Australia from November will be regarded as regional including many state capitals including Adelaide, Hobart, Canberra and Darwin (if you’re brave enough). Many of the tradesmen that I consulted with in South Africa are living in regional parts of South Africa and many of them wouldn’t want to live in the Metropolitan areas mentioned above and face higher property prices, higher cost of living and increased congestion and they wouldn’t see living in regional Australia as a hardship.

One of the most frequent comments I get from people is that they don’t want to immigrate on a “risky” visa where they might face the prospect of having to return home if things don’t work out. The type of general skilled migration visa I’m referring to isn’t particularly “risky” because of the very few requirements that have to be satisfied to progress to permanent residence. It might be somewhat restrictive as to where you can live and work until you acquire permanent residence but it’s not particularly risky.

Ever since the November changes were announced earlier on this year I felt that these changes were largely implemented to benefit occupations such as Tradies, overrepresented in terms of occupations appearing on state sponsorship lists but largely underrepresented in terms of visa approvals for general skilled migration visas. This imbalance is going to be corrected with the November changes.

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13 comments on this post
Sept. 27, 2019, 6:20 p.m. by HERBERT T MUCHOHONYI

Thanks for noting the changes but the greatest challenge still fall on the egg and hen thesis and above all for the tradies above 45, it looks almost impossible to migrate. Some improvements need to be made on the temp skills visas. We need to advocate for such changes if there was an opportunity to do so.

Replies to this comment

Sept. 30, 2019, 5:32 a.m. by Apu mahmud
I working in Singapore about 5 years..still I continuasly work here..can I apply visa for Australia..
Oct. 1, 2019, 2:49 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Hi Apu I couldn't agree more with you. Australia is losing out on valuable skills for those aged 45 and above. New Zealand at least does see value in more mature migrants (at least up to the age of 55). At a time when workers are living and working longer and retiring later Australia should recognise the value of that experienced workers bring to the economy instead of reducing the age limit from 50 to 45.
Reply to this comment
Sept. 27, 2019, 7:18 p.m. by ROBERT BELL

Would a 49 year old trade qualified Goldsmith/Jeweller with an NZQA equivalent and with 30 years experience now qualify for the above?

Replies to this comment

Sept. 27, 2019, 7:36 p.m. by Iain
Hi Unfortunately not, the cut off age remains 45. Iain MacLeod
Reply to this comment
Sept. 27, 2019, 7:27 p.m. by Ronnie

Would like to know whether a 57 year old automotive trade with 30 years experience qualified?

My spouse 52 year old beautician trade with more than 20 years experience qualified? She has CIBTAC and CIDESCO qualification and IELTS 5.5

Replies to this comment

Sept. 27, 2019, 7:37 p.m. by Iain
Hi Unfortunately not Iain MacLeod
Sept. 27, 2019, 7:37 p.m. by Iain
Hi Unfortunately not Iain MacLeod
Reply to this comment
Sept. 27, 2019, 8:24 p.m. by John

I'm 48 years old qualified electrician with more than 20 years experience. I have a trade certificate and diploma in electrical engineering. I am willing to write the English test. What are my chances of getting a state sponsored visa, skilled migration visa or any other work visa in Australia.

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Sept. 27, 2019, 8:24 p.m. by John

I'm 48 years old qualified electrician with more than 20 years experience. I have a trade certificate and diploma in electrical engineering. I am willing to write the English test. What are my chances of getting a state sponsored visa, skilled migration visa or any other work visa in Australia.

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:45 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Hi John There is no age limit on temporary visas for Australia such as work visas (known as a temporary skill shortages visa) but unfortunately there is an age limit on general skilled migration visas of 45 years of age as well as employer nominated residence visas. You might however be interested to know that New Zealand is age limit is 56 years of age and electricians are in demand in New Zealand. I would suggest you contact me with a view to arranging a consultation.
Oct. 3, 2019, 10:05 p.m. by JOHN BOSCO KALEKU
am job seeker, l'm looking for fruit picking job in newzealand or canada.l hope to hear from you.thank
Oct. 3, 2019, 10:05 p.m. by JOHN BOSCO KALEKU
am job seeker, l'm looking for fruit picking job in newzealand or canada.l hope to hear from you.thank
Reply to this comment
Sept. 28, 2019, 12:07 a.m. by Russel Mqadi

I just turn 46, unemployed with 7years on HV substations & 10years of field telecom engineer experiences. I would like to relocate to Australia but looking at cut off age of 45 so will this mean my chances are slim to apply for this 491 visa?

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:43 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Unfortunately yes Russel, because the 491 visa does have an age limit of 45 years of age.
Reply to this comment
Sept. 28, 2019, 12:46 a.m. by Tinus Botes

I am a 58 year old qualified Millwright (Mechanical & Electrical) with more than 30 years experience mainly in mining sector. Will I qualify?

Reply to this comment
Sept. 28, 2019, 12:46 a.m. by Tinus Botes

I am a 58 year old qualified Millwright (Mechanical & Electrical) with more than 30 years experience mainly in mining sector. Will I qualify?

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:42 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Unfortunately Australia has an age limit of 45 for general skilled migration visas and employer sponsored residence visas.There are some exceptions to this but I think that it would be difficult with your kind of background to meet these exceptions.
Reply to this comment
Sept. 28, 2019, 7:24 p.m. by Martin Leuvennink

Hi, we are borderline case, age 43. More than 10 years experience, and qualified carpenter. If we apply for the 491 visa, would we have a chance to apply for permanent residence after 2 years, or will it be too late according to the age requirements?

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:33 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Hi Martin The actual legislation relating to the 491 visa (temporary residence) and subsequent 191 visa (permanent residence) hasn't yet been released but the previous version of this permanent residence visa (subclass 887) didn't have an age limit and we understand that the 191 visa will operate in the same manner i.e. as long as you meet the age limit for the 491 visa (in other words you are younger than 45 years of age when you receive an invitation to apply for residence) it doesn't matter whether you are 45 and above when applying for permanent residence. I would suggest that you arrange to have a consultation with us.
Reply to this comment
Sept. 30, 2019, 3:43 a.m. by Leon Kruger

I have 11 years of Cabinet Making and general contracting (Handyman) experience. I have trade references. I am 40 years old, will this new visa work for me.

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:36 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Hi Leon Thanks for the question. Potentially yes, cabinetmakers are very good occupation as it does have a history of appearing on several state sponsorship lists. If you haven't already completed one of our free preliminary questionnaires on our website I suggest you do so and we will then review the information and advise you whether it is worth your while paying for a consultation with us.
Reply to this comment
Sept. 30, 2019, 6:49 p.m. by Olowolayemo paul

Thanks for this useful information. I am a welder by Trade with more than 20years experience , from Lagos Nigeria. I am 50years old. Just want to know if I am qualify to apply for this programme?

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:41 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Unfortunately Australia has an age limit of 45 for general skilled migration visas and employer sponsored residence visas.There are some exceptions to this but I think that it would be difficult with your kind of background to meet these exceptions.
Reply to this comment
Sept. 30, 2019, 10:49 p.m. by Cyabelo Thabiso Makhetho

Hi l am male of 48 years qualified teacher for nine years, and after that did aircraft mechanic for 10years , A.M.E. licensed on C130 (M.R.O) L WANT TO KNOW IF L DO QUALIFY

Replies to this comment

Oct. 1, 2019, 2:39 p.m. by Myer Lipschitz
Hi Cyabelo Unfortunately Australia has an age limit of 45 for general skilled migration visas and employer sponsored residence visas.There are some exceptions to this but I think that it would be difficult with your kind of background to meet these exceptions.
Reply to this comment
Oct. 3, 2019, 8:19 a.m. by tavona nyasha

Am 37 years and i have 12years of expirience in the field of Refrigeration and AirConditioning plus Ventilation.Should i qualify to migrate to Australia???

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