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Australia continues immigration programs despite temporary travel ban

Posted on April 2, 2020
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Australia Immigration

Australia needs immigration more than ever before to beat the impact of Coronavirus on the economy. Within the context of growing fears of recession in Australia, the country needs migrants more now so as to improve the economic output, especially within the education, tourism and agriculture industries which will be most affected due to reduction in immigration figures because these sectors entirely depend upon migrant populations for work. If Australia restricts immigration, there’ll be an enormous shortage of workers who are essential for the economic progress of the country.

The economic experts predict that the GDP growth of the country within the month of March will be affected with the impact of bushfires and Corona outbreak. With immigration, Australia can resist recession to a certain extent, according to economic experts.

The Australian government is determined to keep the immigration program going. Even though it has implemented a temporary travel ban to counteract the impact of COVID-19.

Based on the travel ban, people outside Australia who have a student visa, graduate visas, skilled visas (provisional), business visas, temporary visas, employer sponsored visas or working holiday visas cannot travel to the country. The ban will not affect those on a temporary visa in Australia nor does it prevent them from leaving the country.

Australia PR visa holders and their families will not be affected by the ban. Let us look at these changes in more detail.

Visa processing to continue:

The ban will not affect visa processing. The Department of Home Affairs will continue to process and grant visas. Visa applicants who are in the middle of  visa processing should continue with their application processing and apply for their visa.

When their visa is granted and the travel ban is lifted, they will be able to travel to the country. It is advisable that applicants should not stop work on their application and should start work on their application, while waiting for the travel ban to end.

Skilled, Employer Sponsored or Family visa programs will not be affected:

The ban does not affect the Skilled or Employer or Family Sponsored visa programs. The Skilled visa program is a long-term visa program and will not be affected by the temporary nature of the travel ban.

The Employer Sponsored visa program which is designed to meet the more immediate needs of the labor market will not be affected by the travel ban. The processing of family sponsored visas,  such as partner, parent and child visas, will continue  despite the ban.

 Student visa applications will remain unaffected:

International education is an important industry in Australia. While the COVID-19 travel ban has caught some international students outside Australia unawares, the universities and academic institutions in the country are moving to online modes of instruction and helping students both inside and outside the country to continue with their courses.

Once the ban is lifted, the institutions will make changes to course start dates to help  international students who were outside Australia to  come to the country  and commence their studies.

Students who are in the process of applying for their student visas must continue with the application so that their visa is ready by the time the ban is lifted and things return to normal.

Visa holders in Australia with a fast-approaching expiry date:

Those with visas that are about to expire and in Australia should contact the immigration department for the required counsel. The immigration department has indicated that it will use its discretion to decide in favor of applicants. These visa holders have the option to apply for a visitor visa or a short-term bridging visa to stay in the country till the situation becomes normal.

Immigration programs in Australia have not really come to a standstill due to the Coronavirus pandemic. This will be the best time to apply for certain visa categories so that you can get a headstart and have an approved visa in hand to move to the country once the travel ban is lifted.

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