Sponsoring Highly Skilled Migrants Under the Global Talent Program | Migration in the COVID-19 Era
Global Talent Program
Joondalup Sponsoring Highly Skilled Migrants. The program is designed to attract the top global talent to Australia to stimulate innovation and growth in the economy. It was piloted in 2018 to attract international talent for STEM startups. Now it is available for other future-focus technology sectors, such as Mining, Energy Technology, and AgTech. Comprising 18% of the permanent skilled migration program, the Global Talent Program is an integral part of Australia’s economic recovery. It has 15,000 placements available in 2020-21.
Split into Two Parts
The Global Talent Employer-Sponsored (GTES) Program
The Global Talent Independent (GTI) Program
It leverages on Australia’s reputation as a relatively safe and prosperous country. The program offers access to Permanent Residence (PR).
Experts believe that a reduction in migration intake would have a crippling effect on Australia’s coronavirus recovery as it has impacted immigration intake to Australia. Scott Morrison announced that the government is expecting ‘ significant falls’ in migration, being a 85 percent decrease next financial year. There will be a 30 percent decrease in net migration this financial year.
Australia’s net migration is calculated as the number of migrant arrivals minus the number of migrant departures in a financial year. These numbers include Australian Citizens, Permanent Residents, New Zealand Citizens and foreign nationals holding temporary Australian visas.
2020/21 Lowest Population Increase
In 2020/21 the government anticipates an increase of just 36,000 people. This is a significant decline from the 2018-2019 when the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that the country’s population grew by nearly 240,000. Australia’s net migration figure has exceeded 180,000 every year since 2006. If Scott Morrison’s predictions are correct, Australia will experience the lowest population increase in more than 40 years.
Most Significant Contributor
The most significant contributor to Australian net migration in recent years have been temporary work visas, student visas, temporary graduate visas, working holiday visas and visitor visas. In the financial year 2018/19 there were nearly 120,000 working holiday visa holders in Australia. They are international visitors with the right to travel and work in Australia.
Temporary Employer Sponsored Visas
Nearly 140,000 individuals were employed in Australia on temporary employer sponsored visas. The employer sponsored visa holders are required to remain employed for their visa to remain valid. These visa subclasses do not provide the visa holder with Medicare or unemployment benefits. It is fair to presume that each of these visa holders provide a net contribution to the Australian economy.
Temporary visa holders are at a significant disadvantage during the pandemic and associated lockdown. Although these visas generally entitle the visa holder to work rights while they are in Australia, employers are not permitted to claim Job Keeper benefits for their staff members who hold a temporary visa. Australian employers who are eligible to claim Job Keeper payments have a significant incentive to retain their Australian staff over temporary visa holders they employ.
High Living Cost
Temporary visa holders are also not eligible for Job Seeker payments if they lose their job. Living cost is high in Australia and few temporary visa holders will be able to meet their living costs in Australia without steady employment or financial assistance.
Temporary visa holders are less likely to have strong ties to Australia eg owning property or have family members who live permanently in Australia, and so are likely to return home if they lose their job. A significant proportion of temporary visa holders are employed in the tourism, hospitality, or agriculture sectors, which have been severely affected by the lockdown.