The work rules for holders of the skilled work visa will be tightened by labor. This way, $4bn of unspent funds could be redirected to fund projects in northern Australia such as the gas pipeline.
The rules will address skill shortages
This new action on the skilled work visa includes ways to restrict work visas only to areas with struggling with genuine shortages of skills and improve on assessments to ascertain that foreign workers have the needed skills and licenses for their occupations.
The Northern Australia Day Fund, instituted newly, will offer concessional loans of up to $1bn to fund tourism projects and $1.5bn for the gas pipeline project that will unlock gas in Bowen Basin and Queensland Galilee. The gas pipeline will also join Betaloo basin to the east coast and to Darwin.
According to Labour, Darwin will be able to export gas with this policy. Queensland and the Eastern seaboard will witness an increased supply. This will, in turn, put pressure on consumer gas price to come down.
Labour will also make promises to change the regulations guiding skilled visas. This will act as a safeguard for preventing exploitation and cut down on the incentive for employers to prefer recruiting foreign workers over Australian.
As for foreign workers in the country who are on temporary skilled visas, labor plans to increase the minimum payment amount from $53,900 to $65,000. If elected, the rate will be indexed yearly.
The Turnbull government, had in 2017, reformed the guidelines of the temporary work visa system by cutting down on the number of occupations and then designing another temporary visa for foreign workers to come work in Australia for two years. This way, they will in no way be eligible to apply for permanent residency.
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