Australian Immigration News
Australia Welcomes More Skilled American Workers
Thursday, April 05, 2012
Australia is hoping to attract more American workers to fill skill shortages in key sectors by taking measures to assist linking Australian employers with skilled workers in the U.S.
Following a number of resource projects which are due to commence in the next three to five years, there will be additional demand for skilled plumbers, electricians and construction workers. Accordingly, in a recent government announcement, both Australian and American officials recognise the potential to match that demand with the supply of workers in the U.S.
Currently U.S. skilled workers can wait in Australia for months before they are issued with licenses that allow them to work in a trade and they face the risk of being rejected if their skills don't meet Australian standards. With the new measures, American workers in licensed occupations such as electricians and plumbers, will be assessed while still in the USA for receiving provisional Australian licences when they arrive.
In addition, the skills assessment process will help Australian employers determine if the skills of the workers are appropriate to their needs.
"This is a great opportunity to address skill shortages in Australia by filling shortfalls in particular areas with qualified candidates from the United States, with applications expected to open from mid-April," said Senator Chris Evans - Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research.
"I understand some of the relevant unions have been talking to their U.S. counterparts about the opportunities for skilled U.S. workers to fill shortages in the resources sector over the next three to four years."
Backing the new assessment process, Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Chris Bowen MP also introduced the first ever skills expo called "Skills Australia Needs" in the United States to explain what jobs are available and how Americans can apply. The expo will be held on May 19 and 20 in Houston, Texas.
"This initiative will provide information on skilled visa options to Americans with suitable qualifications, skills and experience and help them to work in Australia under a temporary employer-sponsored visa," Mr Bowen said.
"They will be able to meet with Australian employers and state and territory governments to discuss possible sponsorship and employment opportunities in Australia."
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