Australian visa slowdown: MP says we want “sustainable growth.”

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Posted on March 4, 2024


3 min read

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Due to increased scrutiny of visa applications, Australian MP Julian Hill has informed that the nation is currently going through a “transition period” in the issuing of visas. He clarified that the nation aims to punish the operators who are damaging the industry’s reputation. It is unlikely that visa acceptance will rise to its prior high levels.

Hill stated, “A valid social licence question is one that all countries need to address. Sustainable growth doesn’t always mean ever more and more students.”

The Nixon report, which detailed the misuse of the visa system, was released in October 2023. According to Hill, “the government makes no apologies for its significantly enhanced focus on integrity and raising the bar.”

The industry has been protesting that there are delays in the issue of visas; according to the Australian news, a group of sixteen venture capitalists (VCs) wrote to ministers alerting them to the possibility of severe financial harm from visa denials or freezes.

However, Hill’s remarks suggest that the administration is committed to reversing the sector’s current practices regarding controlled, more closely watched access.

“A ruthless focus on quality education and a great student experience is required for the success and sustainability of Australia’s onshore sector,” stated Hill. “Things are not where they should be in certain areas of the sector.”

It appears that everyone in the industry is concerned about the shortage of visas. The majority of the Nixon review’s recommendations were accepted by the government last year, and the Department of Home Affairs announced plans to create an immigration compliance branch.

Hill stated that while not every visa decision was made correctly, the system was still getting used to a new quality-first strategy that will eventually help all international students.

“We’re going through a change. People are getting used to it. And without a doubt, not every visa choice is appropriate, just like in every nation.

“In the same way that some individuals enter every nation when they shouldn’t, some legitimate students are turned away when the proof isn’t convincing enough or are rejected. However, we’re working to improve things as we go.

Hill emphasized that Australia firmly desired to accept high caliber students and make sure they obtained an education that maximized their return on investment and improved their prospects going forward.

“I’ve raised the question, and it’s a provocative question, but why would Australia continue to recruit large numbers of students to study very low value qualifications, with no skilled migration pathway and little apparent return on investment?” said Hill, referring to the trade subcommittee inquiry into Australia’s tourism and international education sectors.

“While keeping an emphasis on quality, we must continue to convey that Australia values international education and welcomes students from around the world.”

Hill also emphasized that private operators and other high-quality education providers in Australia might benefit from offshore partnerships.

“The bottom end of the private VET sector is being undermined by issues that have built up over many years under the previous government,” he stated. “There are many good providers in private VET and private higher ed that offer a terrific product.” And we’re committed to handling those.