11 November 2014

Section 457 Visa Reforms – Independent Review – Department of Immigration and Border Protection

On 14 October 2014, the Prime Minister, the Minister for Trade and Investment and the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection announced that the Government will reform the 457 visa programme for skilled migrants.

This follows the Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection announcing an independent review into the integrity of the 457 programme in February 2014.

The 457 programme is a temporary programme aimed at meeting skills shortages. It allows businesses to address labour shortages by sponsoring genuinely skilled overseas workers.

The review was conducted by an independent panel which made several recommendations, which were assessed by the Office of Best Practice Regulation (OBPR) as likely to have a measurable but contained impact on the economy.

The review was certified by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) as meeting the requirements of a Regulation Impact Statement for an early assessment. Under the Australian Government Guide to Regulation, the OBPR does not assess independent reviews.

The Department estimates the average annual regulatory savings to be approximately $29.9 million, and this has been agreed by the OBPR for the purpose of consultation.

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