2020-21 Migration Plan

Below are the details of the Australian Governments Migration Program for 2020-21

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:

Table showing Migration Plan Analysis

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.

  • Within the Skilled visas we can expect to see increased competition for the Skilled Independent 189 visas. Most likely an increase in the number of points required and potentially longer waiting periods. With many of these places taken up by the NZ skilled stream within this visa.
  • Overall the States and Territories will be able to select the occupations and criteria that they consider meet the needs of their region, towards invitations for the State Sponsored 190 and 491 visas. Given the reduction in places within the skilled visas there is likely to be significant competition for these places.
  • Within the Family stream whilst there is an increase in the number of places available to Partner visas, there has been a reduction in the number of places for Parent visas, therefore we might expect to see increases in processing times for these parent visas.