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Tourism labour needs must be top priority for reformed 457 visa

April 20, 2017 Business News No Comments Email Email

The Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) today welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement of a new visa system to support the sourcing of temporary skilled workers for Australian industries struggling to find the right staff.

With thousands of Australian tourism businesses struggling to fill their labour needs, this new system is an opportunity to address the industry’s ongoing labour force issues.

“While we welcome this new visa program, it must support the growing labour needs of the tourism export sector, which is now worth more than $39 billion to the Australian economy,” ATEC Managing Director, Peter Shelley said of the announcement.

“Replacing the 457 visa with a more targeted temporary visa system should help the fast growing tourism export industry meet some of its very immediate labour issues.”

Mr Shelley said whilst the new system focused on protecting Australian job opportunities, it would also enable businesses to recruit temporary foreign workers to fill jobs where specific skills shortages exist.

“The skilled occupation list attached to this visa will be reviewed every 6 months, giving our industry more opportunities to inform the Government where there are significant labour force needs in Australia’s tourism industry.

“With international visitor numbers growing at 11%, there is no doubt the tourism industry will continue to be in need of more skilled and semi-skilled labour and this announcement recognises the value of investing in tourism’s future needs.”

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