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Federal Budget Visa Changes

Last night the delayed 2020-21 budget was handed down by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg, and it forecasted an Australian population of approximately one million fewer people than were forecast for the same period in last year’s budget.

Mr Frydenberg went on to say that the record drop in population growth will have far-reaching consequences for the economy, as the government faces a $213.7 billion deficit – the largest in Australia’s history.

Therefore to bring a balance back to this signifcant drop in the expected population, and to assist in Australia’s economic revival, the Budget papers have revealed a slew of resolutions and changes to various visas which the government hopes will lure the “best and brightest” prospective migrants back to Australia.

In those papers the government estimates that approximately two thirds of new people coming into Australia will be on skilled visas.

Some of the notable changes and resolutions are:

  1. While there remains an expectation that net migration will be on the low side for this year given the covid circumstances and the borders still being closed, the annual visa allocation cap will be kept at 160,000 (which was the same as last year). This means that if things improve quickly, we could see many visas being granted in a relatively short period for the remainder of the financial year.
  2. BUT – and this is the big one – over the next 2-3 years the visa allocation cap will be gradually raised to over 200,000 per year. That is basically a 30% annual increase! This means that over the coming years there will be more and more opportunity for migrants to enter Australia. And as mentioned above the government is of the view that two thirds of these will be skilled migrants.
  3. A considerable increase of the Business Innovation and Investment Program to 13,500 places and these applications will be given priority in this financial year. As per my post of last week if you are a business owner, then Australia is very eager to hear from you.
  4. The family reunion stream will be increased from 47,732 to 77,300 places for this financial year meaning more partner visas will be granted and hopefully much quicker than they were before.
  5. People applying for visitor visas once borders reopen will have their fees waived in a bid to boost tourism.

So, in simple terms and as highlighted in my post from last week there has literally never been a better time to start the process – these favourable conditions will not last forever.

As I always say when it comes to Australian immigration, things can change quickly and if you leave it for too long, you may be left behind.

For further information about the above and to see if you are eligible for a skilled visa you can either do a free assessment on our website at or send me an email at

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