Sydneysiders want migration restricted in the city: poll

Almost two-thirds of people believe migration to Sydney should be restricted and new arrivals sent to the regions, exclusive polling reveals as the Premier says she wants a better not bigger NSW.

The ReachTel poll for the Herald also shows that overdevelopment remains a key issue for voters, as the state and federal governments face the pressue of worsening congestion and population growth.

The poll results come as the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, signalled plans to slow the intake of some temporary migrants and to encourage new arrivals to settle regionally.

Mr Morrison, with his Immigration Minister David Coleman and Cities Minister Alan Tudge, are looking at simplifying the visa process to get more migrants to move outside the major cities.

More than 63 per cent of voters polled for the Herald supported restricting migrant numbers while 50 per cent opposed more development in Sydney to accommodate population growth.

The Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, said the debate around population should focus on people and how to” ensure the best quality of life for all of us”.

“I want NSW to continue to be seen as the magnet for human talent,” Ms Berejikian said.

“But I am also fiercely committed to protecting and improving our way of life, and all that we love about our local communities -our parks, our open spaces, our beautiful beaches, waterways and bushland.”

Ms Berejiklian said there needed to be a national debate about population policy and she would be encouraging Mr Morrison to “join me in leading that discussion for the country’s benefit.”

“States are on the frontline of infrastructure and service delivery so it makes sense we should have a say on population policy,” Ms Berejikilan said.

“Rather than talk about a big Australia, we should always strive for a better Australia. We also need to encourage and make it easier for people to consider moving to regional NSW.”

The Migration Council of Austalia chief executive Carla Wilshire said redirecting migration to the regions was not going to fix the congestion problems plaguing Sydney and Melbourne.

“I can understand why people in Sydney feel like this but by restricting migration, it doesn’t solve an underlying under-investment in infrastructure and urban transport,” Ms Wilshire said.

The poll of 1627 people taken on Thursday night also asked voters to nominate the issues of concern to them, with the cost of living emerging as the most important to voters.

More than one-quarter of people identifed cost of living as their main concern followed by energy prices and housing affordabilty.

The environment was ahead of hospitals, schools and transport, according to the poll.

The polling also shows that the Coalition and Labor are neck and neck six months out from the state election, with Opposition leader Luke Foley edging ahead of Ms Berejiklian as preferred premier.

The weekend marked six months until the March poll, which is looking increasingly likely to result in a hung parliament. The government has only a six seat majority.

The polling shows the fallout from the bruising leadership spill in Canberra has had an impact in NSW, with 40.4 per cent of voters saying the change in prime minister had altered their view of the state Liberal Party.

The Coalition’s primary vote has slumped to 35.1 per cent, down from 41.9 per cent in March.

Labor’s primary vote has also taken a dip to 31.5 per cent from 32.5 per cent six months ago, the polling shows.

Mr Foley has pushed past Ms Berejiklian as the more popular leader, with 50.2 per cent of voters polled believing Mr Foley would make a better premier.

But despite Mr Foley’s personal standing, only 41.1 per cent of voters think Labor is ready to govern again.

Thousands of jobs of offer in regional and rural Victoria as country business promote lifestyle

 

COUNTRY business are rolling out the welcome mat for new workers to fill thousands of job vacancies in regional and rural Victoria.

Federal government data shows almost 6000 regional and rural jobs were advertised online in August, with monthly vacancies consistently above 5100 this year.

Among them were postings for chief executives, engineers, corporate managers, teachers, doctors, veterinarians, labourers and farmers.

Bendigo and the High Country recorded the highest number of vacancies, 1700, followed by Gippsland with more than 1200.

With regional Victoria’s unemployment rate now lower than in Melbourne, businesses are calling for new residents to fill jobs.

Mildura, on the Victorian-NSW border, has listings for a pharmacist, baker, cabinet maker, nurse and senior banking consultant among dozens of other jobs.

Chemist Warehouse Mildura has previously been forced to hire international workers on visas to plug critical staff shortages.

Managing partner Eric Oguzkaya said Mildura’s remote location – more than four hours’ drive from Adelaide and six from Melbourne – and a lack of public transport deterred people looking to relocate.

The community is campaigning for a return of passenger rail with the last train having left the station more than two decades ago.

“If it wasn’t for the international students we would have been in diabolic trouble,” Mr Oguzkaya said.

“They have saved us over the years but they may stay for a year or two and then they head to the city. We want to hire people who make Mildura their home.

“It’s a beautiful place – we have more sunshine than the Gold Coast, the people are down to earth and I can’t imagine anywhere nicer to raise a family.”

Like Mildura, the jobs market in Ararat, 200km northwest of Melbourne, is booming with the expansion of an abattoir, Hopkins prison and wiring harness manufacturer AME Systems.

The growth has put pressure on housing and transport, forcing AME to consider running a bus to pick up employees from surrounding towns and Ballarat.

Trains currently run from Ararat to Ballarat in the morning peak but not in the other direction.

AME System’s Steve Rodis said the business would “struggle” if it couldn’t attract more staff to grow its 250-strong workforce.

He said Ararat offered more than just a job for prospective new residents.

“Housing is more affordable, you get fresh air, you are working at the foot of the Grampians, there is a lot of wineries and cafes,” he said.

“People might think we are a small business in a country town but we are world class.

“If you want a job, come to Ararat. There’s plenty of opportunity for those who want it.”

Portland is also promoting its jobs and lifestyle with an app that lists vacancies, housing options, schools, events and attractions to be launched on October 11.

“It’s a one-stop shop for anyone who is visiting or looking to move,” Glenelg mayor Anita Rank said.

“It’s the most wonderful lifestyle in Portland and that’s the biggest drawcard to get people out of Melbourne and into jobs here.”

Foreign students put off by high costs

Foreign students put off by high costs

High university fees and the hefty cost of living in Australia were the reason almost half a survey group of would-be international students decided not to come to the country.

QS Enrolment Solutions, a global company that surveys student opinions, said of more than 3000 international students who wanted to come to Australia in 2017 but ended up not doing so, more than half said they they couldn’t afford the fees.

 

For more info click on this link below :

https://www.afr.com/news/policy/education/foreign-students-put-off-by-high-costs-20180909-h154io

Is Canada a viable option for applicants struggling to get PR in Australia?

 

Following the recent changes to Australia’s visa system, there are many skilled migrants who are struggling to get Permanent Residency (PR) in Australia. But can immigration to Canada be an option for these applicants?

If you are a skilled worker with the right experience, skills and background, you may be able to make Canada your permanent home through its Express Entry Program.

Like Australia, Canada’s skilled migration program is also a points-based system which is designed to attract highly qualified and experienced professionals to best meet its skills needs.

Following the recent changes to Australia’s visa system, there are many skilled migrants who are struggling to salvage their dream of becoming Australian permanent residents*.

Migration experts believe the ‘visa changes’ have adversely affected the chances of these applicants in the skilled visa categories.

Many applicants who are struggling to meet the desired standards for PR in Australia now aim to move to Canada. But is Canada a viable option for these applicants?

A migration agent in Melbourne says many of his clients are worried due to these changes.

“The visa sector has seen huge changes in the last two years. Some of our clients are now extremely distressed about their prospects in Australia and aim to apply for Canada in high hopes,” he told .

“We’ve seen an impact due to the changes to the skilled occupation lists and state nomination criteria. Some applicants also had their hopes shattered due to the abolition of 457 visas and more recently, due to an increase in points threshold from 60 to 65 for skilled visas.”

He suggested that Canada’s skilled migration program is quite similar to Australia.

“There is not much difference in terms of the point system designed for various skill subsets, job experience and the English language capacity of the prospective applicant,” he says.

“But there are certain occupations that are in high demand where applicants can or may benefit from Canada’s Express Entry program.

“For an example, the transport industry is in a booming stage in Canada so potentially experienced truck drivers should explore this promising opportunity.”

Australia can be a bigger country’: Scott Morrison’s new Population Minister reveals he DOESN’T want to reduce immigration

Australia can be a bigger country’: Scott Morrison’s new Population Minister reveals he DOESN’T want to reduce immigration

Scott Morrison’s new Population Minister reveals he DOESN’T want to reduce immigration
New Minster for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population Alan Tudge has outlined his plan for immigration policy which focuses on a ‘bigger Australia’ with more decentralised population areas.

‘My view has always been that Australia can be a bigger country. But ideally you have a broader distribution rather than very rapid growth in some areas,’ Mr Tudge told.

New Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Mr Tudge are shifting the focus away from reductions to immigrant numbers and towards a redistribution of where they are settled.

Mr Tudge has said that he is in favour of population growth, however, the areas where new immigrants are settled must be broader and not focused in major cities like Sydney and Melbourne

‘I’m not suggesting that for a second that it’s migrants’ fault – not at all,’ he said.

‘If you’ve got regions that can’t find workers and smaller states that want more people, then the immigration program is something that should be looked at.’

He did, however, not comment on a specific plan that would require new migrants to settle in regional areas for five years as a condition of their visas.

A decision on the time period for mandatory settlement was due to go to the Turnbull cabinet last week, but the leadership spill put that discussion on hold, The Australian reported on Wednesday.

The proposal has yet to be put to Scott Morrison’s new cabinet, and the prime minister’s office would not comment on the development of the policy.

It is understood a new visa class would apply to the skilled and family migration program but could also apply to refugees.

Almost 90 per cent of new migrants are settling in metropolitan areas such as Melbourne and Sydney.

A population package put before Government before last week’s leadership spill included the proposal for new migrants to be settled in regional areas for a period of up to five years – after this migrants could choose to relocate.

The newly appointed PM has created a separate portfolio of population to be lead by former Citizenship Minister Alan Tudge.

Department of Home Affairs figures revealed by The Australian showed that of the 112,000 skilled migrants that arrived in the country over the previous financial year, 87 per cent settled permanently in Sydney and Melbourne.

Mr Tudge has previously said that the number of incoming migrants was not the only factor in growing population pressures, but rather where these migrants were settling and the distribution being focused in major cities.

‘If the population was distributed more evenly, there would not be the congestion pressures that we have today in Melbourne and Sydney,’ Mr Tudge told a forum in Melbourne.

‘Nor would there be if the ­infrastructure was built ahead of demand,’ he said.

New visa could keep migrants in regional Australia

The Turnbull government was already working on visas to force migrants to stay in the bush for longer, but Scott Morrison may put his own twist on the plan

The Morrison government is expected to forge ahead with new skilled and family visas that force migrants to spend years in regional areas before they can move to a city like Sydney or Melbourne.

The previous Turnbull government had long flagged new visas to “bind” migrants to the regions, with data from the Home Affairs department suggesting one in 10 who come under existing rural visas then move to a city within 18 months.

New prime minister Scott Morrison is yet to comment on the visas, but his recent cabinet reshuffle suggests the policy could be tweaked or integrated in a broader population policy.

The minister working on the visas was then-multiculturalism minister Alan Tudge, who has now been appointed to the new position of minister for cities and population in the reshaped Morrison cabinet.

The Australian reported a proposal for visas that locked migrants into the regions for five years was due to go to cabinet before the Liberal leadership spill, but is yet to be considered by the new team.

Mr Tudge’s office would not comment on the matter.

David Coleman has been appointed the new minister for immigration. His office told SBS News he was not yet in a position to comment on the policy either, having only just been sworn in.

The move takes immigration policy out of the responsibilities of Home Affairs minister Peter Dutton, with the exception of the Border Force, and could see a shift in emphasis.

Business lobby Ai Group said it hoped immigration would again be seen as an “economic portfolio”.

The business community reacted with anger when the Turnbull government revealed permanent migration – made up of skilled and family visas – had fallen to its lowest rate in 10 years.

James Pearson, head of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the regions were “paying the price” for a failure of infrastructure planning in the capital cities.

Australia already has a number of visa programs designed to bring migrants to the bush, including the Skilled Regional (887) and the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (187).

But the schemes bring in relatively few migrants, despite the acute population decline and skills shortages in some regional areas.

More than 90 per cent of permanent arrivals choose to settle in the big cities on Australia’s east coast.
Moreover, there is little employers can do to stop migrants leaving for a city once their permanent residency has been granted.

In the visa world, the “regions” normally include smaller cities like Adelaide, Darwin, Canberra and Hobart. The government reclassified Perth as a metropolis in November last year.

Questions remain over how the government can force migrants to stay in the regions without running into legal disputes by restricting freedom of movement.

Labor frontbencher Richard Marles questioned how the visas would function in practice.

“I’m not sure that mandating new immigrants living in regional Australia is going to work,” Mr Marles told .

“I’m not actually sure there is the power to put that in place, to actually mandate that they do live there,” he said.

“So I am a little worried about the particular prescription they are putting in place to bring this about.”