Australia Decides to Retain Uncapped Work Rights for International Students till 2023

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International students flood back as Australia tries to get visa system ‘back on track’

The Australian government announced that restrictions on the time duration that international students can work during term time will not be reinstated until mid-2023. While Canberra will allow overseas students studying in Australian universities to work and stay in the country for up to six years.

The commitments announced during the Jobs and Skills Summit are slated to have crucial impacts on the ability of foreign aspirants to choose Australia as a study destination. Andrew Giles, Australian Immigration Minister, has promised to boost the staffing capacity of visa administration by 500 over the span of the next nine months. He also informed that the average student visa processing times had already fallen by almost a quarter since May.

According to Clare O’Neil, Australia’s Home Affairs Minister, the 40-hour fortnightly restriction, a supposedly temporary measure, on international students’ working hours will remain in place for another 10 months. “June 2023 feels…like the right time,” The Times Higher Education reported her saying. “We need it to continue while the skills crisis is so acute, but we also need it to end because this is not what our education system is about,” she further added.

Apart from this, graduates from Australian universities of select degrees in verified skill shortages will be allowed to work in Australia for a longer period after their studies. This period would be increased to four years for select undergraduate degrees, five years for select postgraduate degrees and six years for select PhD degrees.

Recently, the Australian Government also announced that it would increase its permanent Immigration intake from 35,000 to 195,000 in 2022-23. This announcement comes after the country faces an acute shortage of skilled labour.

Ms O’Neil announced this while stating the increase to end in June 2023. The announcement came during a two-day summit to address skills shortages worsened by the pandemic which was attended by 140 representatives of trade unions, government, businesses, and industry.

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