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Monday, May 20, 2024  
11 Dhul-Qadah 1445  

Australia to issue more skilled worker visas as Golden Visa scheme axed

Govt says the scheme was delivering poor economic outcomes
This picture shows the Sydney Opera House with its lights switched off. AFP/File
This picture shows the Sydney Opera House with its lights switched off. AFP/File

Australia is likely to issue more skilled-worker visas after it halted its “golden visa” which granted wealthy overseas investors the right to live in the country, BBC News reported.

The move is part of the country’s broader immigration policy to attract more skilled labour to assist in boosting the country’s economy.

The Golden Visa is considered a way to drive foreign investment and stoke innovation, where applicants had to invest more than US$3.3 million in Australia to be eligible.

However, the scheme was paused as the Australian government found it was “delivering poor economic outcomes” while critics claimed that the scheme was being used by “corrupt officials” to “park illicit funds”.

Australia granted thousands of significant investor visas through the programme since 2012, with 85% of successful applicants coming from China, according to government data.

“It has been obvious for years that this visa is not delivering what our country and economy needs,” Minister for Home Affairs Clare O’Neil said in a statement on Monday.

The reviews of the scheme revealed that it had failed to meet its core objectives.

A government report from December 2023 said that it will be focusing on creating more visas for “skilled migrants” capable “of making outsized contributions to Australia”.

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