In the first year, 200 places have been made available for skilled overseas workers in occupations ranging from childcare workers to mechanics and cooks to farm inspector.
Regional Queensland is now open to skilled and semi-skilled overseas workers in 70 occupations ranging from restaurant supervisor to mechanics and from cooks to childcare workers.
The five-year Far North Queensland Designated Area Migration Agreement (FNQ DAMA) came into effect on September 12, 2019, and is now open to businesses and employers to sponsor skilled migrants in Cassowary Coast, the Tablelands, Mareeba, Cairns and the Douglas Shire through the Cairns Chamber of Commerce.
In the first year, 200 places have been made available for the region looking for skilled overseas workers in occupations ranging from childcare workers to mechanics and cooks to farm inspector.
What is FNQ DAMA?
The FNQ DAMA utilises the labour agreement stream of the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa (subclass 482).
Businesses approved for a labour agreement with the Department of Home Affairs can nominate overseas workers under the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS subclass 482) visa program.
The FNQ DAMA is an employer-sponsored visa program and individual workers cannot apply for a visa independently. Employers must first be endorsed by the Designated Area Representative (DAR) before submitting a DAMA Labour Agreement request with the Department of Home Affairs.
The Australian Government has recently floated a special immigration scheme for parts of Australia that is experiencing labour shortages or need a population boost.
The Designated Area Migration Agreements known as DAMAs provide local businesses access to more overseas workers than the standard skilled migration program.
Under the DAMA framework, employers in designated areas can sponsor skilled and semi-skilled overseas workers. Individuals cannot directly access a DAMA. Individuals need to be sponsored:
by an employer operating in a designated region
for an occupation that is specified in the head agreement.
Australia currently has seven DAMAs which include places like Northern Territory, The Goldfields in Western Australia, Great South Coast in Victoria, Adelaide City and Regional South Australia and Orana in New South Wales.
Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs David Coleman said the FNQ DAMA provided a tailored solution to businesses to fill skills gaps that can’t be filled by local workers.
“We’ll continue to work with regions around the country to ensure they can grow their local economy, with the help of the immigration system,” Mr Coleman said adding there were around 60,000 jobs that can’t be filled by Australian workers.