The Migration Program for the 2020-21 whilst retaining the same number of visa places when compared to the previous year there has been a significant shift in the allocation of places between the Skilled and Family Streams of the available visas. The government announced this within the 6th October 2020 Budget as part of their COVID-19 response measures to assist Australia's recovery. Below is an analysis of how the visa ceilings (i.e. the maximum number of visas that can be issued in that category) have changed across the different visa categories.
It can also bee seen that in previous years the limit placed on permanent residence visas has been reduced from 190,000 (2017-19) to 160,000 more recently.
Within the skilled visas the 2020-21 Migration Plan has seen a shift in emphasis towards allowing the States/Territories more control over migrants moving to their state, as well as targetting highly skilled migrants in key Technology fields. The State/Territory Sponsored visas are split between the Subclass 190 Permanent Residence Visa and the Provisional 491 Skilled Regional visas, that latter was introduced in November 2019 which can potentially provide a pathway to Permanent Residence:
As can be seen in the table there is an approximate 30,000 reduction in places available to the skilled stream visa options and approx. 30,000 places added to the Partner visa. This will hopefully go someway to reducing the significant backlog within the Partner visa stream.