Australia markets close in 1 hour 8 minutes
  • ALL ORDS

    7,344.90
    +18.70 (+0.26%)
     
  • ASX 200

    7,106.80
    +13.80 (+0.19%)
     
  • AUD/USD

    0.7009
    +0.0034 (+0.48%)
     
  • OIL

    113.74
    -0.46 (-0.40%)
     
  • GOLD

    1,822.70
    +8.70 (+0.48%)
     
  • BTC-AUD

    43,332.54
    -227.51 (-0.52%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    682.20
    +439.52 (+181.11%)
     
  • AUD/EUR

    0.6710
    +0.0030 (+0.44%)
     
  • AUD/NZD

    1.1058
    +0.0012 (+0.11%)
     
  • NZX 50

    11,130.48
    -27.18 (-0.24%)
     
  • NASDAQ

    12,243.58
    -143.82 (-1.16%)
     
  • FTSE

    7,464.80
    +46.65 (+0.63%)
     
  • Dow Jones

    32,223.42
    +26.76 (+0.08%)
     
  • DAX

    13,964.38
    -63.55 (-0.45%)
     
  • Hang Seng

    20,395.66
    +445.45 (+2.23%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    26,620.91
    +73.86 (+0.28%)
     

‘Thank you’: PM reveals plan to give $630 to overseas students, backpackers

·2-min read
Rebates will be offered to student and backpacker visas. (Sources: Getty)
Rebates will be offered to student and backpacker visas. (Sources: Getty)

The Australian Government hopes to lure students and backpackers Down Under with the promise of visa application fee rebates, worth $630.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the scheme on Wednesday morning, with visa application fees for students who arrive from today to be subject to rebates.

The rebates will be available for the next eight weeks, Morrison said, noting there were around 150,000 students with visas who would be eligible.

The rebates will be processed through the Department of Home Affairs.

“That [rebate] is a ‘thank you’ to them for coming back and continuing to choose Australia,” Morrison said.

“But we also want them to come here and be able to fill some of these critical workforce shortages, particularly those who are working and being trained in health care, aged care - those types of sectors. That will be incredibly helpful.”

Backpackers also score rebates

Foreigners with backpacker visas would also be eligible for rebates for their visa application fees, with 23,500 backpackers already eligible, Morrison said.

“My message to them is, ‘Come on down’,” he said.

“Come on down now because you wanted to come to Australia, you got your visa. We want you to come to Australia and enjoy a holiday here in Australia, move all the way around the country and, [at] the same time, join our workforce and help us in our agricultural sector, in our hospitality sector, and so many of the other parts of the economy that rely on that labour.”

The visa rebate scheme is expected to cost $55 million.

Tourism Australia will also receive a $3 million boost, to market Australia to backpackers and students.

It comes as Australia experiences a damaging worker shortage as Omicron’s rapid spread threatens to force as many as 10 per cent of workers, or 1.3 million into isolation and quarantine.

Unions have threatened to strike over concerns that lack of access to rapid antigen tests (RATs) is fostering unsafe workplaces.

“The exposure of workers to COVID-19 is a foreseeable risk that must be managed,” Australian Institute of Health & Safety chairperson Naomi Kemp said.

“The supply of free RATs would enable workers to contribute to the management of workplace infection risk, especially in high-risk settings.

“The Federal Government has signed contracts worth tens of millions for the supply of rapid antigen tests this week, but it is not yet clear where the tests will be deployed or when they will arrive for use.”

Follow Yahoo Finance on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to the free Fully Briefed daily newsletter.

Sign up to get Fully Briefed every business day and Rich Thinking every fortnight, straight to your inbox.
Sign up to get Fully Briefed every business day and Rich Thinking every fortnight, straight to your inbox.
Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting