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The new regional skilled visas and the pathway to permanent residency in Australia

regional skilled visa immigration australia migration agents

Two new regional visas will be introduced from 16 November 2019.  These visas will lead to permanent residency after a period of 3 years. The visas are applicable to regional Australia and everywhere except for Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa

The key points are:

  • It replaces the current subclass 489 visa
  • It will have 14,000 places allocated per year
  • It will be initially granted for 5 years
  • It is a skilled visa which will be points tested
  • It requires either state government nomination, or sponsorship by an eligible family member who is settled in a designated regional area
  • You must have a positive skills assessment
  • You must be under 45 years of age.

Subclass 494 Skilled Employer Sponsored

The key points are:

  • It replaces the current subclass 187 visa
  • It will have 9,000 places allocated per year
  • It will be initially granted for 5 years
  • It requires an employer to sponsor you in a position that is likely to exist for 5 years
  • You must have competent English
  • You must have the support for the Regional Certifying Body in the location to support the need for the position.
  • You must meet the annual market salary rate for the position. 
  • You must have at least 3 years skilled employment
  • You can move between jobs but will have 90 days to find a new nominator
  • You must have a positive skills assessment
  • You must be under 45 years of age

The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme Visa (subclass 187) and the Skilled Regional (Provisional) Visa (subclass 489) will close to new applicants from November 16, 2019.

Transitional arrangements will be put in place for applications which have been lodged and are undecided at that time, as well as applicants whose pathway currently targets the permanent Skilled Regional Visa (subclass 887).

One important factor to note is that when you are a subclass 491 or 494 you cannot apply for any of the following visas unless you have held the 491 or 494 for at least 3 years:

  • Subclass 820 (Partner)
  • Subclass 124 (Distinguished Talent)
  • Subclass 132 (Business Talent)
  • Subclass 186 (Employer Nomination Scheme)
  • Subclass 188 (Business Innovation and Investment provisional)
  • Subclass 189 (Skilled independent)
  • Subclass 190 (Skilled Nominated)

If you’re interested in the new regional skilled visas and the pathway to permanent residency in Australia, please contact our team of Reigstered Migration Agents to discuss your immigration options.


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