The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) has announced an additional $10 million will be allocated towards 457 visa processing in as part of Budget 2011–12.
DIAC makes the following statement in relation to the role of the 457 program:
“The program is uncapped, demand-driven and highly responsive to the economic cycle. It provides a flexible avenue for employers to fill immediate and short-term skill vacancies where Australian workers are not available.”
The increase in funding is consistent with consistent statements made by the Minister of Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen, that he favours demand driven migration policies which target skills shortages.