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Irish Abroad

Australia to axe the 457 temporary work visa

Thousands of Irish people apply for this visa each year.

THE AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT IS set to axe the 457 temporary work visa, which entitles people to work in the country for up to four years once an employer sponsors them.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made the announcement today, saying the move is aimed at giving priority for jobs to Australian workers.

Thousands of Irish people apply for the 457 visa each year. Current holders will not be affected by the move.

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“We’re putting jobs first, we’re putting Australians first,” Turnbull said.

We are an immigration nation but, the fact remains, Australian workers must have priority for Australian jobs. So we’re abolishing the 457 visas – the visas that bring temporary foreign workers into our country.

Turnbull said the 457 visas will no longer be “passports to jobs that could and should go to Australians”.

Replacement visa

“However, it is important that businesses still get access to the skills they need to grow and invest, so the 457 visa will be replaced by a new temporary visa, specifically designed to recruit the best and brightest in the national interests,” Turnbull said.

He added that the new visa “will better target genuine skills shortages” and will have new requirements, including previous work experience and better English language proficiency.

Turnbull said a new training fund to help Australians fill skills gaps will be introduced, adding that more information will be made public in the coming days and weeks.

The move has been met with a mixed reaction.

Pauline Hanson, leader of the One Nation party, claimed the announcement was a reaction to her party’s anti-immigration stance.

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