The Australian government has scrapped the popular Temporary Work (Skilled) visa and and replaced it with a new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa.
The Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457 visa) was employer-sponsored and which many Indians had availed was replaced on March 18.
In April last year, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull had announced that his government will abolish the work visa programme to “safeguard Australian jobs”.
The new TSS visa programme will comprise two streams – short-term and medium-term, according to the Department of Home Affairs.
The short-term visas will be issued for two years, while the medium-term visas will be issued only for more critical skills shortages and for up to four years, with eligibility to apply for permanent residence after three years.
Both the streams will include mandatory labour market testing with limited exemptions, a new non-discriminatory workforce test, mandatory criminal history checks, a market salary rate assessment and a new two-year work experience requirement.
A higher proficiency in English language has been made mandatory under TSS for the medium-term stream.
The new visa will also include a strengthened training obligation for employers sponsoring foreign skilled workers to provide enhanced training outcomes for Australians in high-need industries and occupations.
These changes will give Australian job seekers more opportunity to find work while finding the right balance so businesses can prosper by acquiring the expertise they need, says a government release.