7 Jun 2018

Australia’s permanent migration intake: ‘A ceiling not a target’

While the Government recently confirmed Australia’s migration intake will remain at 190,000 permanent residence visas for the 2018-2019 financial year, Immigracious migration agent, Sheila Woods says migrants need to be aware that the full quota may not be reached.

Although the Government has confirmed Australia’s migration intake, Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has said, “We’ve made it quite clear we’re not proposing to reduce that 190,000 number but it is a ceiling, it’s not a target.” This indicates the Government could possibly offer fewer permanent residence visas in 2018-19.

Could this be the start of a trend? 

Since 2012 almost exactly 190,000 migrants were granted permanent residence each year as per planning levels. However, in the most recent 2016-17 financial year, there were 7,000 less visas granted than the planning level of 190,000. In addition, the Department of Home Affairs Minister, Peter Dutton has confirmed he expects the number of permanent visas granted over 2017-18 to be “less than 190,000″, which may indicate the start of an ongoing trend.

Ms Woods isn’t surprised by Mr Dutton’s confirmation, saying she has noticed competition to receive an invitation for permanent residence through the General Skilled Migration program is becoming more intense. Ms Woods believes this may be a contributing factor towards the full permanent residence visa allocation not being reached by the end of the 2017-18 financial year.

Ms Woods says, “We’ve seen the Government become a lot more selective when offering invitations for General Skilled Migration visas. The Department of Home Affairs statistics are telling us that General Skilled Migration invitations are no longer being issued to people with less than 70 points even though the required pass mark is 60 points to receive an invitation.” Read our article on recent General Skilled Migration statistics here.

Ms Woods believes the Government’s recent changes to permanent residence pathways may also impact the number of people who can apply to migrate permanently. In particular, changes to the eligibility requirements for Australia’s employer sponsored visa program may have rendered some people over 45 years of age ineligible to apply. In addition, the application process has become more complex with the need to meet more rigorous character and English requirements. There are however multiple pathways to permanent residence and Ms Woods advises it can be worth getting professional advice on your options if you would like to stay in Australia.

Are you eligible for permanent residence? 

The Government is continuing to assess Australia’s permanent migration pathways and Immigracious will keep you updated on how any upcoming changes may impact you. We also offer a free assessment of your visa options, including permanent residence. To find out if you are eligible, contact our migration agents on 08 6263 4406 or

Source: SBS NewsABC News and The Sydney Morning Herald

Sheila Woods

Posted by: Sheila Woods

A very experienced migration agent, Sheila has always been fascinated by this field. Her university degree thesis was on Australia’s post-war immigration history (and it earned her first-class honours).

Filed in: Visas


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