Australia – Skilling Australians Fund Bill Passed

Get ready, its Budget time and the Government needs money so the proposed Skilling Australians Fund legislation has today passed the Senate

Labour Market Testing Amendment

Two important amendments to the Bill were agreed to in the Senate;

  • Senator Cameron's amendment that labour market testing must be conducted not more than 4 months before the nomination is received, advertising to be for 4 weeks and not the current 21 days.
  • Senator Griff's amendment that an independent review of the operation of the Skilling Australians Fund Act be undertaken as soon as practicable after 18 months from the Royal Assent date and to be completed within 6 months, was also agreed.

Please note that no Migration Regulations have been released today and until the legislation is given Royal Assent the current Training Benchmark regulations will remain in force.

What is the Skilling Australians Fund?

The fund will replace the current Training Benchmarks.  The current training benchmarks require a sponsor for a 482 or ENS and RSMS visa application to show that they have spent 1% of their payroll on training local Australian staff over the previous 3 years.

What are the proposed changes going to look like?

The monies charged by the Government will be provided to and administered by the Department of Education and Training (DET) to support skills development of Australians such as funds for further education, vocational education, and skilled training.

What is going to be the cost of the new charge?

  • 482 charge - the nomination charge will be calculated according to the number of years set out in the nomination, e.g. for business with turnover less than $10 million, the nomination fee will be $1200 per 12 month period.  For example, if the business was to nominate a person for a 4-year visa, the fee would be $1200 per annum x 4 years = $4,800
  • 482 charge - the nomination charge will be calculated according to the number of years set out in the nomination, e.g. for business with turnover more than $10 million, the nomination fee will be $1800 per 12 month period.  For example, if the business was to nominate a person for a 4-year visa, the fee would be $1800 per annum x 4 years = $7,200
  • Permanent Visa Charge -  the nomination charge will be calculated according to the annual turnover of the business.  For businesses with turnover less than $10 million, the nomination fee will be a flat $3000
  • Permanent Visa Charge -  the nomination charge will be calculated according to the annual turnover of the business.  For businesses with turnover more than $10 million, the nomination fee will be a flat $5000

How is this charge to be paid?

  • the maximum amount of the nomination training contribution charge is capped at $8000 - for nominations relating to a temporary visa
  • there are no pro-rata provisions payment of the charge for parts of a financial year

The fee will be payable at the time of the lodgment of the nomination application.

Associated documents

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