In the most recent invitation round (which was also the last one for this program year) for SkillSelect Visas (Subclass 189 and 491), there were 660 invitations, which was an 81% increase over the January 2021 round.
500 invitations were issued for Subclass 189 visas and 160 for Subclass 491, family-sponsored visas.
Over the entirety of the program year, 1690 invitations were issued for Subclass 189 visas and 743 invitations were issued for Subclass 491, family-sponsored visas.
Minimum points required in the April round
The minimum points score required for a Subclass 189 was 80 points, and a minimum of 65 points was required for a Subclass 491 Visa.
Of note, in the pro-rata occupations invitations were only issued for Industrial, Mechanical and Production Engineers with a score of at least 80 points, “Other Engineering Professionals”, with a minimum score of 90 points for the Subclass 190 visas, and a minimum score of 70 points for the same occupation for a Subclass 491 Visa.
Surprisingly, the most recently lodged Subclass 189 EOI (expression of interest) was from July 2019 – which means that it was not far off expiring, as EOI’s only last for two years from the date of lodgement. The most recent EOI for a Subclass 491 Visa was March 2021.
Points of interest from the invitation round
by looking at the extrapolated data from the occupation ceiling table, it appears that the majority of the invitations were issued to the following occupations:
- GP’s and resident medical officers, and other Medical Practitioners, including Internal Medicine Specialists and Medical Imaging Professionals
- Registered Nurses
- Mining engineers
- Industrial, Mechanical, and Production Engineers
- Social Workers
- Other Engineering Professionals
- Medical laboratory scientists
- Natural and Physical Science Professionals
- Geologists, including Geophysicists and Hydrogeologists
Given the constant number of newspaper, radio and TV articles about employers across the board being incredibly short-staffed, it seems probable that the new program year will yield far more invitations than this program year. Even government ministers are talking up the necessity for accelerated Skilled Migration, once the borders re-open. We also anticipate that occupations in the hospitality and aged care areas will be added to the relevant occupational lists for the SkillSelect Visa program, as the need is huge, all over Australia.
We are currently advising all of our clients to ensure that they are ready for the new program year, and even though there is still a little uncertainty about when it will commence, we suggest that you book a consultation with us to get the ball moving.
The government has already stated that it will prioritise visa applications from applicants who are onshore, which is another reason to get ready if you’re already here!
If you do this, we will be able to advise you which Visa pathway is most appropriate for you, and what sorts of pre-lodgment things to get in order (e.g skills assessments), to allow you to lodge your EOI application quickly, and get into the queue as soon as possible. We will also advise you whether it may be better for you to find an employer to sponsor you to facilitate your pathway to permanent residence by an alternative route.
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