Australian immigration changes lead to fast tracked visa process for thousands of applicants

A key change to the Australia immigration system is that it will be based solely online using a new system known as SkillSelect.

The Australian government has introduced SkillSelect in the hope that the country will better be able to respond to the needs of the economy; the ongoing mining boom in Western Australia left significant gaps in labour markets across the country and in light of this it is hoped that SkillSelect will allow Australia visa applications to be processed much quicker.

The new system will allow potential migrants to register their interest in moving to Australia and lodge their details with the government using an Expression of Interest.

However, while an Expression of Interest (EOI) is certainly the first step in starting the process of moving to Australia, it is not an Australian visa application.

An EOI simply requires a potential applicant to provide some information such as personal details, professional experience, education and English language proficiency. Applicants will also be required to complete a Skills Assessment related to their desired occupation. However, the pass mark for the Skills Assessment has been lowered from 65 to 60 in line with the changes, making it much less of a challenge than under the old system.

Once an EOI has been lodged, it will be automatically ranked alongside other EOIs in the same occupation category based on assessment scores and the time of the submission. An EOI will remain in the SkillSelect system for two years.

To avoid an influx of workers with similar skills, each occupation category will be subject to a ceiling, a limit which cannot be exceeded in one year. If an EOI in a category has reached this ceiling, the application will be deferred to the following year.

If the ceiling has not yet been met and an applicant’s score is high enough, SkillSelect will invite the applicant to lodge their full visa application.

Another change under the new system is that visa subclasses have been reclassified, with further amendments to some of them:

The 175 visa is now the 189 visa.

The 176 visa is now the 190 visa.

The 475 visa is now the 489 visa.

Both the 189 visa and the 190 visa allow a holder to live, work and study in Australia on a permanent basis while the 489 visa allows the holder to live and work in Australia for four years.

“SkillSelect and the Australian immigration changes introduced on 1 July will come as great news to anyone looking to apply for a visa and make the move to Australia.”


  1. Garima Sharma   |  Monday, 16 December 2013 at 8:41 am

    I want to apply for Australia immigration process


  2. Sunil Mathew K   |  Monday, 11 August 2014 at 10:07 am

    I want to apply for Australian immigration process. I am an Associate member of ICWAI, India.

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