The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) was signed in June 2015 between Australia and China. It is an agreement to lower trade barriers such as tariffs on imported goods, and restrictions on labour and investment between these two economies.
There have been recent discussions on the issue of the cap on the number of 457 visas to be issued under the ChAFTA and also the abolishment of the labour market testing requirement for Chinese nationals. However the outcome of these discussions is not clear.
It is prescribed on the ChAFTA :
Paragraph 3 of Article 10.4: Grant of Temporary Entry states that Australia shall not:
a) Impose or maintain any limitations on the total number of visas to be granted to natural persons of the other party: or
b) Require labour-market testing, economic needs testing or other procedures of similar effect as a condition for temporary entry.
Current Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Trade and Investment, Dr Jim Chalmers MP added that the China free trade agreement has turned labour market testing from a mandated requirement into just an optional extra.
In view of this ChAFTA labour market testing debate, Labour Support Group has gathered information from more credible sources that is more important to migration agents:
On the Issue of Skills Assessment:
Under ChAFTA, all Chinese applicants for a subclass 457 temporary work (skilled) visa will require skills assessment as per the usual standard 457 visa process, however a number of occupations currently subjected to mandatory skills assessment is reduced.
- Automotive Electrician,
- Electrician, and;
- Motor mechanics
are not required for the mandatory skills assessment and the remaining occupations will be in review later.
On the issue of Labour Market Testing:
The key fact is that, contrary to government assertions, the agreement does not require labour market testing to determine whether Australian workers are available before issuing visas to Chinese workers.
If the ChAFTA is implemented as it stands, the Australian government will give up the right to require labour-market testing for Chinese nationals sponsored for standard 457 visas and "installers and servicers" on 400 visas. It will also give up the right to put any cap on the number of 457 or 400 visas.
What you should do if your Chinese national and are trying to apply for a 457 visa:
Our advice is simple:To avoid any unnecessary interferences to the visa process, we encourage the nomination process to include labour market testing, despite the occupation.
For a peace of mind, it is advisable that the labour market testing is undertaken.
To assist you we (with the support of Labour Support Group) conduct an accurate and efficient labour market testing process on your behalf.
Some specifics of our LMT:
- Advertising, interviewing, reporting and all other costs
- Position description
- Advertise onto 5 local job boards including paid boards
- Interview you and provide a full comparison analysis
- Certify the outcome of the LMT and provide a professional letter of opinion
- Quick turnaround and accurate market testing
Contact us today to discuss your options.