Skilled migration news – Dec 2017


DIBP expanded and became DHA

The name of Department of Immigration and Border Protection (“DIBP”) was changed to Department of Home Affairs (“DHA”) on 20 December 2017. It was not merely a game of changing name, in fact, it combines Australia’s immigration, border protection, law enforcement and domestic security agencies in a single portfolio.

On 18 July 2017, Malcolm Turnbull, the Prime Minister announced such a proposal with an intention to establish a model similar to the Home Office of the United Kingdom or the United States Department of Homeland Security. The new department is led by Peter Dutton, who was also the Minster of former DIBP.

The services performed by former DIBP were not affected and the original website will direct to the new address ( automatically. However, intended migrants should be aware of the name changed as they will be approached by DHA in relation to their Australian immigration applications.

Update on recent invitation rounds for SkillSelect   

The Department of Home Affairs has released the invitation rounds results up to 6 December 2017. It was no surprise that invitation rounds stay at two for each month. However, the number of invitations were significantly reduced and all of them were allocated to 70 or above pointers.

In November 2017, 700 invitations for subclass 189 (point tested stream) were issued in each round. From the table below, we can see that more than half of the applicants who received the invitations were 75 pointers and the minimum points to get the invitation in November was 70.

We also saw a further reduction in the number of invitation invitations for 6 December round. The invitation number dropped to 300 while the minimum invitation point for this round was 75.

The Department of Home Affairs did not disclose the expected number of invitations in the coming month. They only comment that the next invitation round will be conducted on 3 January 2018 and the invitation numbers issued depends on the number of visa application being processed.

Given that the current processing time for 189 visa is around 6 months (for 75% of the applicants) and 10 months (for 90% of the applicants), we expect the invitations issued in the next few months will remain low to clear the backlog.

Quota usage snapshot

For the eight occupations subject to pro-rata quota arrangement, the competition remains tough. The table below summarises occupations which require pro-rata arrangement:

Occupation Required points Total invitations issued since 9 Nov round Quota filled up Remaining quota (%) Approx. Waiting time
Accountants (2211) 75 934 2597 2188 (46%) 7 weeks
Auditors (2212) 75 198 726 601 (45%) 14 weeks
Electronics Engineers (2334) 75 15 415 585 (58%) 4 weeks
Industrial, Mechanical and Production Engineers (2335) 75 108 921 1,149 (58%) 10 weeks
Other Engineering Professionals (2339) 75 75 475 525 (52%) 9 weeks
Software and Applications Programmers (2613) 75 271 2,751 3,451 (55%) 9 weeks
ICT Business and System Analysts (2611) 75 163 787 787(50%) 11 weeks
Computer Network Professionals (2631) 75 66 586 732 (55%) 9 weeks

For intended migrants who work in the above eight occupations but with lower points, you may wish to consider other visa options, such as migration via state nomination. You are strongly encouraged to discuss your situation with registered migration agents.

Popular Occupations in Hong Kong with low filled up rate


The table below sets out some Hong Kong popular occupations with low filled up rate.

Occupation Quota for the financial year No. of invitations up-to-date for 2017/18 Filled up rate (%)
Architects and Landscape Architects 1,474 84 5.7
Civil Engineering Professionals 3,296 333 10.1
Early Childhood (Pre-primary School) Teachers 2,639 44 1.7
Secondary School Teachers 7,910 147 1.9
Occupational Therapists 1,109 21 1.9
Physiotherapists 1,464 32 2.1
General Practitioners and Resident Medical officers 3,495 88 2.5
Registered Nurses 16,741 663 4.0
Psychologists 1,750 17 1.0
Social Workers 1,562 72 4.6

The above source is extracted from the Department of Home Affairs’ website: 6 December 2017 invitation round

To explore your visa options, please visit our website or complete a free online assessment and book for an initial assessment with our professional migration professional.

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