Major reforms of the subclass 457 visa programme have been effected over recent years through the introduction of the Migration Legislation Amendment (Worker Protection Act) 2008, the Migration Amendment (Temporary Sponsored Visas) Act 2013, and changes to the Migration Regulations 1994.
Given the importance of the subclass 457 programme in supporting employers in industries and regions which are experiencing skill shortages, and the potential of the programme to contribute to productivity growth in the Australian economy, a review of the integrity of the programme in light of these reforms is warranted.
Consistent with the government’s commitment to rigorous evidence based regulation and productivity reform, the review is to:
- determine the level of non-compliance by sponsors in the subclass 457 programme, both historically and under the current regulatory framework
- evaluate the regulatory framework of the subclass 457 programme and determine whether the existing requirements appropriately balance a need to ensure the integrity of the programme with potential costs to employers in accessing the programme
- report on the scope for deregulation while maintaining integrity in the programme
- review and advise on the appropriateness of the current compliance and sanctions.
Conduct of the Review
The review will be conducted by an external review panel, appointed by the Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection.
The external reviewer will be supported by a secretariat from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.
A draft review report will be reviewed by the Ministerial Advisory Council on Skilled Migration (MACSM), and the views of the MACSM are to be noted in the report.
The reviewer will submit the final report to the Minister and Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection.
The Review will be conducted with a view to reporting by 30 June 2014 and a progress report is to be provided by mid-March 2014.