The following responds to a discussion paper issued by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) on 4 June 2010. The discussion paper addresses the government's intentions to issue a range of reforms aimed at rationalising the visa framework to make it simpler and more efficient.
Specifically, the Government has committed to reduce by 50 per cent the number of temporary working visa subclasses by 2012 and to target a 50 per cent reduction in the total number of visa subclasses by 2015. The discussion paper issued by DIAC has asked for submissions on possible changes to the first tranche of visas being reviewed, namely the temporary residence and visitor visa group as well as more general comments on the overall project.
Universities Australia would like to thank the Department for taking the initiative to simplify the visa system for temporary and permanent entry into Australia. Universities Australia welcomes the possibility that Australia will have clear visa pathways for students and visiting researchers who wish to attend our member university campuses. A simpler visa framework is seen as beneficial in the current highly competitive international environment for students and researchers. Within the temporary residence and visitor visa category for which comment has been sought, the 419 Visiting Academic visa has most relevance to member universities and forms the focus of this submission.
To read the full submission, download the PDF below.