20 % increase in visa applications last financial year. The Government is pursuing new reciprocal working visa agreements with 13 countries, including Brazil, Croatia, Fiji, India, Mexico, Monaco, the Philippines, Solomon Islands and Switzerland.
From January 2020, second-year visa holders will be eligible to apply for a third year in Australia if they complete an additional six months of specified work in regional areas.
Workers were also permitted to spend 12 months working with the same agricultural employer — up from the previous limit of six months.
Two new visa categories were introduced, allowing about 23,000 eligible workers to apply for permanent residency if they live and work in a regional area for three years.
Overseas workers have the same legal protections in Australia, regardless of their visa status or citizenship. Firms are required to pay legal wages and provide safe workplaces.