Attention subclass 500 student visa holders! The Prime Minister only recently announced a 3 stage roadmap for Australia’s way out of the coronavirus pandemic. On that roadmap features a possible lifting on travel bans. The Federal Government has confirmed that it has considered exempting international students from Australia’s travel restrictions as early as this July. There has also been considerations to approve travel between Australia, New Zealand and Pacific island nations.
Compared to other countries internationally, Australia has done extremely well in mitigating the risk of spread and working towards “flattening the curve”. However, this had to come at a cost with our economy hit the hardest.
The roadmap features 3 stages. The first stage sees the reopening of restaurants, cafes and shopping centres, the second stage sees the reopening of gyms, cinemas and amusement parks and the third stage largely focuses on international travel easements. Although the only countries considered are Cross-Tasman and pacific island nations, it is an excellent start to bringing back normality in our lives.
Of course, this roadmap will be implemented through the discretion of State and Territory leaders and this roadmap still does not eliminate the 1.5 metre social distancing rule. Albeit, the easing of these restrictions and the pace that they will be enforced will be largely dependent on our responsibility to ensure social distancing measures are kept intact.
The education industry in Australia is deemed the country’s largest imports which sees hundreds of thousands of international students coming to study in Australia each year. Did you know that international students contribute AU$40 billion a year to the Australian economy? This move to reopen the doors to international students as early as July is seen as a way of allowing our economy to give relief to our educational institutions who were also affected by the pandemic.
The International Education Association of Australia chief executive has recently called for the reopening of Australian borders for international students, saying that they offer more than just economic benefits. He specifically told SBS News that,
“International education is Australia’s fourth-largest export industry which generates nearly 240,000 Australian jobs and is a key revenue source for public universities and many other private education providers.”
He also said that reopening Australian borders to international students could give the country a “step up on the competition” in the international education market against Canada, the US and the UK for future overseas enrolments. However, despite this exception being made to international students, no considerations have yet been made on other restrictions being lifted, that is, to allow our tourism industry to once again bring in eager travellers who wish to explore Australia. This next lifting of restrictions will be something that we will just need to wait in anticipation for. Even if international students are allowed back into Australia in July, do expect that self-isolation measures will still apply.
Our Registered Migration Agents at Migration Centre of Australia have been in the migration industry for many years and have helped thousands of clients onshore and offshore. We are trained professionals in Australian Migration Law and we are trusted providers in the industry for our services. If you are a student visa holder please know that these changes will affect you.
If you want to know more about subclass 500 student visas, or if you wish to apply for a student visa, or if you are already a subclass 500 visa holder and you simply want to know about how these changes can affect you, contact us today on (02) 4626 1002 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and one of my registered migration agents will be ready to help.