2021 was the Coronavirus pandemic year, which caused a massive impact on Australia’s immigration system. 2020 was a challenging year for international students and prospective immigrants, as the entire immigration system went entirely upside down when Covid-19 emerged as a global crisis. But 2021 will differ from the last year, as the government is all set to take Australian immigration to the next level.
The Coronavirus catastrophe’s uncertain nature means much will remain unsettled in 2021 and Australia Immigration; however, there are some positive things that we can be sure of and look forward to in 2021.
International students in regional Australia can extend their post-study visa
Good news! For international students studying in regional Australia, which excludes- Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane. These students can soon apply for a post-study 485 visa extension, provided they meet the eligibility criteria. As per the Department of Home Affairs, international students graduating or post-graduating from regional Australia will get an extension on the current two-year study visa at the beginning of 2021.
“The additional post-study work arrangements will become available in 2021, and will require ongoing residence in a regional area.”- Department of Home Affairs
Skilled visa nomination programs to reopen soon
The Department of Home Affairs recently issued the final allocation to Australian states and territories for Skilled nominated Subclass 190 and the Skilled Regional Sponsored Subclass 491 visa categories for 2020-21. The distribution paved the way for the reopening of skilled visa programs in 2021.
The Program aims to attract immigrants who can make valuable contributions to the Australian states or territories and assist them in recovering from the economic blow post-Covid-19. Victoria will reopen its skilled Program from Jan 5, 2021, while NSW has now received more places than the previous year. Queensland’s Program will remain suspended until further notice.
The state has cleared that the applicants working in the medical, health, research, and life sciences sectors will only receive the invitations.
Strict penalties on applicants who don’t declare “high-risk biosecurity items.”
This year, Australia’s government has taken an enormous responsibility for addressing biosecurity threats to ensure Australians’ safety and minimize the risks of bringing prohibited items by international travelers. With effect from Jan 1, 2021, it could penalize you for not declaring high-risk biosecurity goods at the Australian border.
Now, all international travelers must declare food, plant material, and animal items on their incoming passenger cards. Failing to do so will cause stringent penalties, including visa cancellation or deportation.
The country wants to implement biosecurity controls to curb the risk of exotic pests and diseases entering the country.
The above are some changes that we will witness in the realm of Australia Immigration in 2021. Prospective immigrants can take hints from these pointers and prepare themselves to migrate to Australia.