2020-21 Migration Program planning levels

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The Federal budget reveals that the nation’s borders are likely to remain shut until the second half of next year.

Handing down his third budget as Treasurer on Tuesday, Josh Frydenberg revealed a gradual return of permanent and temporary migrants is expected to occur from mid-2022 – about six months later than the assumption relied upon in previous federal budget.

The cap on people migrating to Australia will remain at 160,000 in 2021-22 as the government continues to focus on onshore applications and reducing the partner visa backlog at a cost of almost $300 million over four years.

Family and skilled stream places will remain at 2020-21 levels, while the humanitarian program will also remain capped at 13,750 places per year.

The government also used the budget to flag plans for a phased return of some international students to Australia from late 2021.

Below is the 2020-21 migration program planning levels

2020-21 Migration Program planning levels
Stream and Category 2020-21
Skill stream  
Employer-Sponsored 22,000
Skilled Independent 6,500
Regional 11,200
State/Territory Nominated 11,200
Business Innovation & Investment program 13,500
Global Talent 15,000
Distinguished Talent 200
Skill Total 79,600
Family Stream  
Partner 72,300
Parent 4,500
Other Family 500
Family Total 77,300
Special Eligibility 100
Child (estimate; not subject to a ceiling) 3,000
Total 160,000

State and Territory nominated visa categories –
2020-21 nomination allocations

Under the 2020-21 Migration Program settings, nomination allocations are made available to States and Territories in the following visa categories:

  • Skilled – Nominated (subclass 190)
  • Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) (subclass 491)
  • Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP)

States and Territories each assess eligible applicants against criteria unique to their jurisdiction.

Following consultation with States and Territories, the following nomination levels have been allocated for 2020-21:

State and Territory nominated visa allocations
State Skilled Nominated (Subclass 190) Visa Skilled Work Regional (Subclass 491) visa Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP)
ACT 802 598 30
NSW 3,550 2,800 2,200
VIC 2,500 1,043 1,750
QLD 1,000 1,250 1,400
NT 500 500 75
WA 1,100 340 360
SA 2,000 2,000 1,000
TAS 1,000 1,750 45
Total 12,452 10,281 6,860

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