Great Move! Australia extends its backpacker work visa scheme
In a great move, the Australia has extended the backpacker work visa scheme the Australia has extended the Working Holiday Maker visa programme over a dozen countries including India in order to recruit the workers from regional areas to solve the labour shortages particularly on farms.
The Australian government is in discussions to extend the scheme to include backpackers from 13 countries to find workers wanted by regional businesses to work on farms.
The Australian Government’s ‘Working Holiday Maker Programme’, which includes the ‘Working Holiday visa and the Work and Holiday visa’, is a cultural exchange programme which enables young travellers to have an extended holiday and earn money through short-term employment.
Apart from India, other nations which were being targeted by Australia to expand the work and holiday visa were from Brazil, Mexico, the Philippines, Switzerland, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Andorra, Monaco and Mongolia.
Coleman said the government was working on expanding work and holiday visa conditions in an effort to recruit workers to regional areas, according to a report by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
Under the current programme that allowed backpackers to work while they stay was witnessing a decline thus creating workers shortage issue in regional parts of the country.
About 150,000 people were in Australia on a working holiday visa in March, but the programme has actually shrunk over the past five years.
Coleman said the changes were designed to resolve labour shortages in regional areas, particularly on farms.
While countries in the uncapped 417 visa scheme are typical backpacker nations such as the UK, Canada, Germany and Sweden, the 462 visa (known as “work and holiday”) scheme includes more developing countries like Singapore, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam, Indonesia, China and Bangladesh.