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Understanding Australia's points-based immigration system for skilled professionals

Australia introduced this immigration system to ensure Australia’s continued economic growth by attracting professionals who poses skills and experience that will benefit the country. Not only does this system fill gaps in the Australian labour market, but research have time and again indicated that as many as eight new jobs flow from the appointment of one skilled migrant.

Understanding Australias Points Based Immigration System For Skilled Professionals

This migration programme controls the quality, variety and number of workers moving to the Australia and according to the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Control is “specifically designed to target migrants who have skills or outstanding abilities that will contribute to the Australian economy” and to fill labour shortages.


Since the onset of Australian skilled migrant policy in 2001 the system has undergone some evolution and focus to one seeking people who will make a specific contribution to the Australian economy.

To qualify for any one of the range of Australian skilled visas applicants must undergo a points-based assessment. Points are awarded in a number of categories which are considered attractive qualities for migrants to Australia to have. The qualities, on which points are awarded to each applicant, are in line with the country’s growth and expansion plans and works towards a situation where migrants contribute in such a way as to eventually create more employment opportunities for locals while stimulating the Australian economy in a positive way.

Age requirements

Australia is keen on attracting young talent and there for applicants must be under 50. Any applicants aged between 25 and 32 automatically start with half of the required 60 points. Those aged between 45 and 49 start with zero.

Competency in English

As Australia’s official language, the language of the laws, their government and the workplace is English, prospective migrants are expected to prove that they are able to communicate in English and understand English well enough to keep them safe and conduct business easily. However, applicants only receive points for their English language ability is there are proved “proficient” or “superior”.

Qualifications and experience

The applicant’s qualification are very important to their application and a minimum of 60 points must be earned for a qualification. Set guidelines indicate each applicant’s value based on their education and experience.

For instance, a doctorate from an institution recognised by Australia is worth 20 points on the prospective migrant’s assessment.


In some cases the applicant will have to present proof of sponsorship by an employer or family member or nomination by a territorial government.

If an applicant is not sponsored by an employer, their occupation must be on an approved list known as the Skill Select list – a list comprising of occupations for which not enough local talent is available but are required to ensure the growth of the country.

In order to protect their own labour force Australia introduced a limit on the number of applications that can be accepted in any occupation. For the 2015-16 intake, Australia has already approved all 1,000 available visas for auditors, company secretaries and corporate treasurers; the 1,788 industrial, mechanical and production engineers; and 1,000 other engineering professionals.


But if you are a (non-primary) school teacher, a vet or a cartographer, there are still thousands of places left.

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