Australian visa changes for 2021 - | Hudson McKenzie

Australian visa changes for 2021

February 25, 2021 | Immigration, Latest Thinking, Travel

Like many other countries, Australia is seeking to find ways of boosting its economy post-Covid and one way is through immigration. As such, there have been a number of changes among some of the visa categories, namely, the Business, Investment and Innovation Program, Global Talent Independent program and the partner visa. The aim across all changes to Australian immigration is to increase economic productivity. 

Business, Investment and Innovation Program

This program is designed to encourage entrepreneurs and business people to reside in Australia. The Australian government is planning to streamline and improve the operation of this visa program and is also said to increase the visa fees from July 2021. 

Global Talent Independent program

The Australian government is aiming to increase by tripling the quota for the Global Talent Independent program to attract international talent. The program is designed to grow the innovation and tech industries. To be granted this visa, an individual will need to be highly talented in one of the 7 target areas: 

  • AgTech
  • Space and Advanced Manufacturing
  • FinTech
  • Energy and Mining Technology
  • MedTech
  • Cyber Security
  • Quantum Information, Advanced Digital, Data Science and ICT

The eligibility requirements for this visa route include the following:

  • prove they are internationally recognised with evidence of outstanding achievements
  • still be prominent in their field of expertise
  • provide evidence that they would be an asset to Australia, in their area of expertise
  • have no difficulty obtaining employment in Australia or becoming established in their field
  • have a recognised organisation or individual in Australia nominate them as global talent, in the same field as the applicant

Partner visa

In an attempt to increase economic participation and promote social cohesion, the Australian government is in the process of putting in place an English language requirement for partners. There will also be a requirement for the sponsor to pass the English language test if they are permanently resident and do not hold Australian citizenship. The government is concerned about the rise in people with low levels of English which they believe can make people vulnerable to exploitation.

From mid 2021, new partner visa applications and permanent residents will have to show a functional level of English and will need to demonstrate reasonable efforts to learn the language by taking 500 hours of English classes to meet the requirement. 

Should you have any queries regarding the above information or if you require assistance with your corporate, employment or immigration matter, please get in touch with a legal professional at Hudson McKenzie via email at or by telephone +44(0) 20 3318 5794.

The information provided does not amount to legal advice.