Occupation List changes proposed for July: Media professions to walk off the set

Yesterday, the Department of Jobs and Small Businesses (DJSB) released their latest Traffic Light Bulletin on what changes they propose to the various occupation lists for skilled visas.

It should be made clear that these changes are not confirmed, and submissions can be made from members of the public on the suitability of any change. Particularly, peak bodies and industry groups may be able to provide insights into the labour market the DJSB is not aware of.

Occupation Lists affect many temporary and permanent skilled visas, including:

  • Subclass 408 – Training visas,
  • Subclass 482 - Temporary Skill Shortage visas,
  • Subclass 485 - Temporary Graduate visas,
  • Subclass 489 - Skilled - Regional (Provisional) visas,
  • Subclass 186 - Employer Nomination Scheme visas,
  • Subclass 187 - Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visas,
  • Subclass 189 - Skilled – Independent visas, and
  • Subclass 190 - Skilled – Nominated visas.

Importantly, however, the relevant occupation lists are not all the same. For instance, the occupation of Multimedia Designer (ANZSCO: 232413) is on the Medium and Long Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) for 482 and 186 visas, and on the occupation list for 187 visas, but are suspiciously absent from any General Skilled Migration visa occupation list.

From the full list, highlights include:

  • A number of film, television, radio and stage director occupation may be removed from the Short-Term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL). These occupations, however, may be eligible for a Subclass 408 – Temporary Activity visa as a production role other than as a performer;
  • Given the above, Footballers (ANZSCO: 452411), who may also qualify for a 408 visa as a elite player are set to have their occupation "upgraded" from the STSOL to the MLTSSL;
  • Management Accountants (ANZSCO: 221112), Agricultural Consultants (ANZSCO: 234111), and Civil Engineering Technicians (ANZSCO: 312212) are set to be "downgraded" from the MLTSSL to the STSOL;
  • Dentists (ANZSCO: 252312) and Anaesthetists (ANZSCO: 253211) are looking to be moved to the Regional Occupation List (ROL).

The ROL for the sake of 482 visas, requires the nominated occupation to be in a regional area. ROL occupations, however, are treated as being on the MLTSSL, meaning visa applicants, subject to being nominated for the same period by their potential sponsor, may be eligible for a visa for up to four years instead of the maximum two years for STSOL occupations.

Of course, these changes are not set in stone, and the final decision rests with the Department of Home Affairs, which earlier in the year kept recruitment consultants despite the DJSB recommending otherwise.