Temporary visa numbers balloon to record high

Earlier this year, the Morrison Government announced that is would cut Australia’s non-humanitarian permanent migrant intake by 30,000 to 160,000 in order to “restrain population growth pressures in Sydney and Melbourne in particular”. However, while the non-humanitarian permanent migrant intake has been cut, net overseas migration (NOM) and net long-term arrivals continue to balloon, running


Who will be held responsible when visa privatisation fails?

Cross-posted from The Conversation: The Department of Home Affairs has begun taking steps to outsource its visa processing to private service providers. This move has sparked an important national debate on transparency, accountability and profiteering in the immigration system. The proposed changes will involve private service providers processing certain “low-risk” visas, rather than department staff.


Conflict-of-interests mire Coalition’s visa privatisation

The planned privatisation of Australia’s visa system has been delayed until next year after a web of conflict-of-interests were discovered across the Morrison Government: The tender bid, managed by the department, is now at arm’s length from Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Immigration Minister David Coleman because of their long personal and professional relationships with


Australia’s low-skill visa system is wrecking productivity

Yesterday’s annual productivity report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) revealed that multifactor productivity (MFP) – the key driver of Australian – fell by 0.4% in 2018-19, with labour productivity also registering its first ever fall of 0.2%, or 0.8% when adjusted for the quality of work: The result led to the usual head-scratching


Labor: Temporary visa tsunami is crushing wages

Labor has called for an urgent review of the temporary visa system after the latest report from the Australian Population Research Institute (APRI) revealed a high concentration of temporary migrant workers across large swathes of the economy (see below table). From The Australian: Labor has called for an urgent examination of the temporary visa regime


Abul Rizvi: $53,900 wage floor too high for ‘skilled’ visas

Abul Rizvi, former Deputy Secretary of the Department of Immigration and one of the architects of Australia’s faux ‘skilled’ migration program, has penned an article claiming that the $53,900 wage floor for regional skilled migrants is too high: On 16 November 2019, the Government’s much-touted regional migration visas took effect. One of these is a


Aussie towns lash Coalition’s regional visa farce

Predictably, Australia’s towns are unhappy about the Morrison Government’s farcical deeming of Perth and the Gold Coast as “regional” despite being bonafide metropolitan areas: Small regional towns like Swan Hill in Victoria are now competing for migrant workers against cities like Perth and the Gold Coast… Jason King’s business needs workers with skills, but it’s


Uber, not mass immigration, blamed for traffic gridlock

With Melbourne’s population having soared by around 600,000 people over the past five years: And the city turning into one giant construction site, a Victorian parliamentary committee is trying to pin the blame for Melbourne’s growing congestion on ride sharing services like Uber: The growth of ride-share vehicles since Victoria’s taxi industry was deregulated two


Surge in ‘low-skilled’ visas delivers low productivity economy

Dr Bob Birrell and David McCloskey have released a an excellent report, entitled Australia’s ‘Jobs and growth’ strategy: pathway to a low productivity economy, which argues that surging low-skilled migration is undermining wage growth and creating a low-productivity economy. Below are key extracts: Attempts to kick start growth in the Australian economy have so far


ANU: Coalition’s visa reforms won’t shift migrants to regions

MB has frequently ridiculed the push by the Morrison Government towards decentralisation, noting that this is a pipe dream based on the settlement pattern of new migrants, which have overwhelmingly chosen to flood the major cities: Well, the situation is even worse than presented above with new ANU research of settlement patterns showing that around


A warning from UK on Coalition’s visa privatistion

With the Morrison Government planning to privatise Australia’s visa system, Australians living in the United Kingdom – which privatised its visa system in 2014 – are warning the Australian Government not to go down the same path: Australians are suffering delays, huge expense and frustration in the UK’s newly privatised visa processing system – and


Gerard Minack: Mass immigration killing wages

Economist Gerard Minack has warned that the huge rise in labour supply from mass immigration is holding down Australian wages: Gerard Minack, an economist and principal at Minack Associates, said when compared with the boomer generation, the economic choices of recent generations are much more limited. “Well, young Australians are facing a hell of a


New modelling: Mass immigration makes Aussies poorer

New modelling from a group of academics from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) suggests that Australia’s mass immigration policy is making Australians poorer and raising inequality: We modelled four development scenarios for Australia through to 2030: “Growth at all Costs”, emphasising economic growth “Green Economy”, emphasising environmental outcomes “Inclusive Growth”, emphasising social equality


Migration Institute: $53,900 salary too high for “skilled” visas

Yesterday, the lobby group for Australia’s migration agents – the Migration Institute of Australia (MIA) – attacked the $53,900 minimum salary attached to the Coalition’s new regional visas: The Migration Institute of Australia has criticised the decision to require regional-based migrants to earn $53,900 a year in order to qualify for permanent residency. “While the


New regional visas summon the global unwashed

Australia’s much maligned ‘skilled’ visa system is about to become even more unskilled, judging by Morrison Government’s new region visas: New regional visas have launched this week, giving migrants in more occupations a chance to stay in Australia… Migrants need to commit to life in regional Australia for at least three years… But if they


Memo to Recessionberg: mass immigration is destroying productivity

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has penned an op-ed in the AFR championing the “three P’s” of 1) boosting productivity; 2) raising workforce participation; and 3) increasing the population via immigration, to see off the nation’s ageing population: As a nation, we need to effectively leverage the three P’s – population, participation and productivity – to meet


Farm visas drive “chronic exploitation” of migrant workers

Another report has emerged of “chronic exploitation” of migrant workers on Australia’s farms: Australian authorities are investigating whether dozens of workers from small, remote Fijian villages may be victims of labour exploitation after allegedly being deceptively recruited to work on farms in north-west Victoria. …a local Victorian MP said worker exploitation was a “chronic” issue


Australia’s ‘skills-based’ visa system is failing

For years we have been told that Australia’s visa system is world-leading because it provides the economy with vital skills and plugs so-called critical labour shortages. This view is generally based on a superficial examination of Australia’s permanent migration program, whereby the ‘skilled’ stream accounts for around two-thirds of the intake: The reality paints an


Finally, a genuinely ‘skilled’ visa program emerges

Federal Immigration Minister David Coleman will today officially launch its Global Talent Scheme (GTS) visa program, which will fast track permanent residency visas for 5,000 “high-skilled” people from around the world: The program aims to establish a high-skilled migration stream that will fast-track visas for 5000 of the world’s best and brightest every year, with


Coalition’s regional visa scheme in “full panic mode”

We noted earlier this week how the Morrison Government’s much vaunted regional visa scheme had turned into a farce, with the Government manipulating the data and deeming Perth and Gold Coast “regional” despite being bonafide metropolitan areas: Perth is Australia’s fourth largest city with a population of 2.1 million people. And while the Gold Coast


Memo to Liz Allen: Mass immigration = greater inequality

Feverish defender of mass immigration and a ‘Big Australia’, Dr Liz Allen, has hypocritically decried rising inequality across Sydney, where basic infrastructure and services are failing to keep pace with demand: Professor Nick Parr, a demographer at Macquarie University, said the areas of Sydney among the most advantaged 10 per cent nationwide saw average reductions


Coalition’s regional visas turn farcical

Immigration Minister, David Coleman, has declared the Coalition’s regional visa push a triumphant success and has announced that the cities of Perth and the Gold Coast will now also be declared regional: The federal government is increasing intake under its regional migration program from 23,000 to 25,000 after the initial success of the initiative and


Australia’s skilled visa system needs radical overhaul

For the past five years, MB has frequently derided Australia’s ‘skilled’ visa system, which we have demonstrated is poorly targeted, ineffective, and is failing in its stated purpose of alleviating chronic ‘skills shortages’ across the economy. Our concerns have been centred around three main areas. First, around half of all migrants granted visas under the


Malaysian scammers abuse Australia’s electronic visa system

Another report has emerged highlighting how Malaysians are manipulating Australia’s electronic travel authority (ETA) visa system to stay long-term in Australia: Australia’s population of 64,600 lapsed visa holders is more than triple the size of last year’s refugee intake, newly released Immigration data has revealed. Malaysian visa overstayers were the most highly represented, with around


CBA: Mass immigration will keep Australian housing unaffordable

CBA interest rate strategists, Jarrod Kerr and Adam Donaldson, claim that mass immigration is Australia’s “fountain of youth” and will prevent housing prices from falling. From The Australian: Back in January 2017, the interest rate strategists at the Commonwealth Bank published a Global Markets Research paper called Demography is Destiny for Interest Rates, But Immigration


Australia’s skilled visa hoax exposed again

For years, MB has highlighted the deep flaws in Australia’s purported ‘skilled’ visa system, which accounts for around two-thirds of Australia’s planned migrant intake: Our concerns has been based upon three main flaws, specifically: The overwhelming majority of migrants under the skilled stream are not actually skilled; Those that have arrived in Australia have overwhelmingly


Low-paid “skilled” visas rush Australia’s jobs market

Australia is commonly regarded as running one of the world’s best ‘skilled-based’ immigration programs. This view is based on the fact that the ‘skilled stream’ comprises around two-thirds of Australia’s non-humanitarian permanent migrant intake, as illustrated in the next chart: MB has consistently challenged this view on a number of grounds. First, while around two-thirds