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Construction work


Australia welcomes UK and Irish construction workers

 with new visas

14 July, 2008

By Sarah Richardson

Government makes changes to Second Working Holiday Visa to encourage construction workers in light of recent credit crunch

The Australian government has changed its visa requirements to encourage construction workers from the UK and Ireland to head to the country in the wake of the job losses sweeping the British sector.

The move comes after job losses in the UK housing sector alone hit 6,000 so far this year, which is likely to just be the tip of the iceberg.

Australia has now made changes to its Second Working Holiday Visa to encourage construction workers from the UK and Ireland to head to the country. The change means 18- to 30-year-old British and Irish workers who work in this sector for a minimum of three months can now stay in Australia for up to two years.

Previously, the Second Working Holiday Visa was only available to people who worked for a primary producer, such as fruit picking, but these new rules will apply to jobs in areas such as residential and non-residential building construction. 

Provided the work is conducted in a regional area and applicants have completed the specified work during the first 12 months of their Working Holiday Visa, they are eligible.

Rodney Harrex, Tourism Australia general manager for UK and Europe, said the new visa rules were a way of supporting the construction and mining industries in regional areas as well as giving more young Brits the chance to live the Aussie lifestyle for an extended period.

“There are lots of opportunities in regional Australia to work in construction and with the slowdown of this industry in the UK, now is the perfect time for 18- to 30-year-olds to consider living and working Down Under,” Harrex said.



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