Australia has announced changes to the ‘457 visa’ programme for skilled foreign workers to limit their ability to look for another job after their official employment ends, a move that will adversely affect Indians working in the country.
Foreign workers on a 457 visa will only now be able to stay in Australia for 60 days after their employment ends, instead of 90.
Immigration Minister Peter Dutton on Wednesday said, “From November 19, 2016, the period that a subclass 457 visa holder may remain in Australia after their employment ceases will be reduced from 90 days to 60 days.”
He said that the government was committed to ensuring that Australian workers have priority and to reduce the potential for temporary visa holders to be exploited.
The largest number of workers come from India (26.8 per cent), followed by employees from the UK (15 per cent) and China (6.6 per cent).
“We want to put Australian workers first and there are also jobs where there aren’t enough Australian workers … where we need to bring in foreign workers on short-term visas,” Australian cabinet minister Christopher Pyne said.
“But we have got to make sure it’s tightened up because when Bill Shorten was the minister for employment it spiked by 60,000 in one year.”