Inquiry assesses impact of higher migrant visa fees

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Inquiry assesses impact of higher migrant visa fees

The federal government has asked the Productivity Commission to assess the impact of increasing migrant visa fees, as well as the mix of permanent and temporary migration intakes.

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The federal government has asked the Productivity Commission to assess the impact of increasing migrant visa fees, as well as the mix of permanent and temporary migration intakes.

The Treasurer, Joe Hockey, and the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Peter Dutton, announced the Migrant Intake into Australia Public Inquiry, with the terms of reference to “undertake an inquiry into the greater use of charges relative to quotas and qualitative criteria to determine the intake of temporary and permanent entrants into Australia”. 

The terms of reference provide that the government’s  purpose in commissioning the inquiry is “to examine and identify future options for the intake of temporary and permanent entrants that improve the income, wealth and living standards of Australian citizens…”.

However, according to Minister Dutton, the government has no plans to make significant changes to the migration program. Dutton said the migration program was currently regulated through a mix of qualitative requirements – such as skills, family connections, refugee-status, health, character and security – as well as quotas and imposts.

While the terms of reference specifically ask the Productivity Commission to examine the impact of payments as a method of determining intakes of both temporary and permanent migrants, they also provide for it to look more broadly at “alternative methods”.

The commission will release an issues paper shortly, to frame the issues on which it is seeking information and feedback. It has 12 months to report back to the government.

See: Migrant Intake into Australia Public Inquiry Terms of Reference

Information on progress of the inquiry will be available on the Productivity Commission’s website.
 
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