What is the change? The Skilling Australians Fund Act received Royal Assent Tuesday and will take effect this year.

What does the change mean? The legislation requires employers to pay significant levies when nominating foreign workers in order to fund training programs for Australian workers. Employers must also fulfil additional rules on job advertising to meet labour market testing requirements.

  • Implementation time frame: The implementation date will either be set by proclamation or will take place six months from 22 May 2018 (approximately 22 November 2018).
  • Visas/permits affected: Visas under the Temporary Skills Shortage, Employer Nomination Scheme, Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme.
  • Who is affected: Employers nominating candidates under the three visa categories.
  • Business impact: The levies will add significantly to the costs of nominating foreign employees.
  • Next steps: The levies will affect applications made on or after the implementation date and applications lodged but not decided before the implementation date.

Skills levies: Under the Act, employers will pay a “nomination training contribution charge” of up to a maximum of A$8,000 for nominations for a temporary visa and A$5,500 for nominations relating to a permanent visa for the current fiscal year ending June 30. The figures will be increased annually.

Labour marketing testing: Several rules on labour market testing advertising are also included in the Act. Advertising must be conducted within four months before the nomination is lodged, must set out the skills and experience required and be targeted so that a significant proportion of qualified Australians would be aware of the position, must be posted for at least four weeks, and a copy of the advertisement may be required to accompany the nomination. The Minister for Immigration and Border Protection may set the language, method, period and duration of advertisements.

BAL Analysis: Companies should budget for the upcoming Skilling Australians Fund levies and amend their job advertising practices to comply with the new rules. The levies will be due in full for each nominee at the time of nomination.

This alert has been provided by BAL Australia. For additional information, please contact

MARN: 0101248

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