Citizens of the United Kingdom will soon be eligible for a pathway to citizenship in Australia if they undertake a new seasonal agriculture worker visa to be implemented by the end of 2021.
The seasonal agriculture worker visa was announced last month as a trade-off for the Australia-UK trade deal which no longer requires UK backpackers to complete a period of time working on Australian farms.
Prior to the deal, UK backpackers under the age of 30 could undertake a one year visa to live and work in Australia. However, extension of the visa required 90 days of regional or agricultural work.
With the new Australia-UK trade deal in place, UK citizens, under the age of 35, are now eligible for a three year visa to live and work in Australia, with no requirements to undertake regional or agricultural work. The negotiated agreement was formulated after consultation with CANZUK International and other stakeholder bodies.
Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Barnaby Joyce, welcomed the announcement of the new agricultural visa as concerns were raised that farmers would miss out on UK labour as part of the new deal.
Help us by making a donation today
Mr. Joyce told The Australian newspaper that workers on the new visa should be able to apply to become Australians if they “had the prospect of being a good citizen”.
“I am in favour of decent citizens who work hard, having the capacity to become Australians…especially (people) working in regional areas,” he said.
“We’re very supportive of an appropriate pathway to migration permanency if these people are coming in to work in and around rural and regional Australia.”
National Farmers’ Federation CEO, Tony Maher, also told Sky News Australia that the organisation supported the move.
“The commitment to an agricultural visa is really critical for us. We’ve had commitments around that for a little while, now we are absolutely deadset on making sure that the government commit to this visa and build it from the ground up,” he said.
CANZUK International welcomes the announcement of the new agriculture visa and will continue to work with Australian MPs and Senators to ensure that its development is one of many CANZUK-related opportunities that encourage reciprocal visas between the four nations.
Join CANZUK International on social media