The new Australian Agriculture visa
The Australian federal government will introduce a dedicated agriculture visa to help fill a COVID-induced labour shortage across the farming, fisheries and forestry sectors.
The Australian Agriculture visa is not capped and will include pathways towards permanent residency and regional resettlement.
It is unclear at this stage which countries will sign up for the visa.
It will operate from September 21, ahead of the next harvest, and comes in addition to the existing Seasonal Worker Programme and Pacific Labour Scheme, considered highly successful by the government.
The government forecasts the number of Pacific and Timorese workers in Australia will double to over 24,000 under the scheme.
Due to the ongoing pandemic, all workers will need to be quarantined, adding additional constraints on bringing in Pacific workers.
The Australian announcement follows moves from New Zealand to expand its travel bubble to Tonga, Samoa and Vanuatu, allowing season workers to travel without two weeks quarantine to help address agriculture labour shortages.
In January, the state of Victoria struck a deal with Tasmania to allow seasonal workers to quarantine there before travelling to the mainland, to help fill gaps in the workforce.
If you need help with your Australian visa application, please contact a registered migration agent today.