The total number of places granted in 2019-2020 for the permanent migration program was 140,366 which was within the planning ceiling of 160,000. Almost 70% of the visas in the permanent migration program were granted through the skilled stream that included 4,109 places under the highly skilled Global Talent Independent program, launched in November 2019.
- Skilled – 95,843
- Family – 41,961
- Special eligibility – 81
- Child – 2,481
Although the migration planning levels for 2020-2021 remain at 160,000, it is important to note that these levels are treated as a ceiling rather than a target. The breakdown of the 2020-2021 figures is provided for each stream including various visa subclasses. The planing levels for 2019-2020 year are used in the tables below for comparison purposes only.
In the previous year two thirds of the quotas were usually allocated to the Skilled stream but in 2020-2021 it makes only 50% to the total. As a result of that and due to the redistribution of places, Skilled Independent program is reduced by two thirds, State/Territory Nominated and Regional programs are both reduced by more than a half. At the same time Business Innovation and Investment program as well as Global Talent Independent program are increased two and three-fold respectively.
- Employer Sponsored
- Skilled Independent
- State Nominated
- Business Innovation and Investment program
- Global Talent
- Distinguished Talent
Family stream is boosted from 47,732 to 77,300 places for this program year only. There is a clear focus on Partner visas with more that 80% increase. It is expected that 75 per cent of Partner visas will go to those already in Australia.
- Other family
- Special Eligibility
The Humanitarian Program ceiling will be reduces by 5,000 and set at 13,750 places, with a flexible mix of places between offshore and onshore categories.
Partner Visas Changes
The mandatory family sponsorship provisions for Partner visas will be implemented which will:
- separate sponsorship assessment from the visa application process
- require the approval of persons as family sponsors before any relevant visa applications are made
- impose statutory obligations on persons who are or were approved as family sponsors and provides for enforceable sanctions
- allow to refuse or cancel sponsorship applications and to bar a family sponsor where inappropriate use of the program or serious offences are detected
- improve the sharing of personal information between the sponsor and the applicant
On a positive note, partner visa applications where a sponsor resides in a designated regional area will be given priority during the 2020-21 Migration year.