The Australian Immigration Minister David Coleman has announced that the country is looking to extent the ‘Working Holiday Maker’ visa programme to nationals of 13 countries, including India, in order to plug regional labour shortages, reports PTI.
The labour shortages in question specifically relate to a lack of enough farm workers. The programme allows foreign youths travelling the country to carry on with an extended holiday while simultaneously taking up jobs on a temporary basis.
Other countries which the working holiday visa will be aimed at Brazil, Mexico, Philippines, Switzerland, Fiji, Latvia, Lithuania, Andorra, Monaco, Mongolia and the Solomon Islands.
Challenging assumptions that the programme was largely aimed at bringing in low-skill workers, Coleman pointed out that the bar for immigrants applying under the programme were also quite high.
"Work and holiday applicants must meet minimum requirements before a visa can be granted, including having a functional level of English and they must hold or be studying towards tertiary qualifications,'' he said.
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