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Australian Immigration Visas Cooks Hospitality Industry

John Masanauskas in The Herald Sun 30 January 2014:

Cooks lead the way in Australia’s skilled migration program.  AUSTRALIA’S skilled migration program has been called into question with the revelation that cooks received more visas than any other group last year.

Hairdressers also made the top five in a system that is supposed to target the most needed skills for the nation.

More than 8000 cooks got permanent visas in 2012-13, followed by 5700 accountants, 2160 software engineers, 1550 IT business analysts and 1500 hairdressers.

Skilled migration is dominated by Indians and Chinese, who comprised about half of the 129,000 places approved last year.

Monash University migration expert Bob Birrell said the spike in visas for cooks and hairdressers was caused by allowing former foreign students who were living here to apply for permanent residency.

Dr Birrell said that these people were caught out by changes to the skilled migration rules but the Immigration Department had unwisely told them they could continue to apply for residency.

“Now that demand for migration is tapering off a bit they are obliged to deal with these applicants,” he said.

“They are filling up their quota with these warehoused applicants, that’s why we’re getting so many cooks.”

Dr Birrell said it was ridiculous to say that Australia had a highly skilled migration program. “The program has a life of its own and it’s continuing at very high levels not with standing the sharp downturn in the need for skilled migrants,” he said.

According to the department’s 2012-13 Migration Program Report, the skilled migration system focused on migrants to help fill critical skill needs, particularly in regional areas.

This included almost 50,000 places nominated by employers and state or territory governments, and 44,000 in the skilled independent category.

There were more than 114,000 applicants waiting to be processed for skilled migration as of June 30 last year.’

 

How to frame the question or the issue?  It’s all very well to present a snapshot now, without providing any context which could include existing and future trends such as ageing population demographics, historically high turnover in hospitality and increasing demand over time. 

Putting this into perspective, the ‘Cookery’ and related industry occupations employ 300,000 with up to 200,000 job openings over next three years due to high turnover in the industry, 8,000 permanent skilled immigrants equates to less than 3% of occupation.

 

  • Over the five years to November 2017, the number of job openings for Cooks is expected to be above average (between 25,001 and 50,000). Job openings can arise from employment growth and people leaving the occupation.
  • Employment for Cooks to November 2017 is expected to grow moderately. Employment in this large occupation (39,700 in November 2012) rose slightly in the past five years and in the long-term (ten years).

 

  • Over the five years to November 2017, the number of job openings for Chefs is expected to be high (greater than 50,000). Job openings can arise from employment growth and people leaving the occupation.
  • Employment for Chefs to November 2017 is expected to grow moderately. Employment in this very large occupation (83,500 in November 2012) rose strongly in the past five years and rose very strongly in the long-term (ten years).

 

  • Over the five years to November 2017, the number of job openings for Fast Food Cooks is expected to be high (greater than 50,000). Job openings can arise from employment growth and people leaving the occupation.
  • Employment for Fast Food Cooks to November 2017 is expected to grow moderately. Employment in this large occupation (39,900 in November 2012) rose strongly in the past five years and rose very strongly in the long-term (ten years).

 

For Kitchenhands:

  •  Over the five years to November 2017, the number of job openings for Kitchenhands is expected to be high (greater than 50,000). Job openings can arise from employment growth and people leaving the occupation.
  • Employment for Kitchenhands to November 2017 is expected to grow moderately. Employment in this very large occupation (118,400 in November 2012) rose moderately in the past five years and rose slightly in the long-term (ten years).

 

  • Over the five years to November 2017, the number of job openings for Cafe and Restaurant Managers is expected to be high (greater than 50,000). Job openings can arise from employment growth and people leaving the occupation.
  • Employment for Cafe and Restaurant Managers to November 2017 is expected to grow strongly. Employment in this very large occupation (54,800 in November 2012) rose slightly in the past five years, remained relatively steady in the long-term (ten years).

 

For Pastrycooks:

  • Over the five years to November 2017, the number of job openings for Bakers and Pastrycooks is expected to be average (between 10,001 and 25,000). Job openings can arise from employment growth and people leaving the occupation.
  • Employment for Bakers and Pastrycooks to November 2017 is expected to grow slightly. Employment in this large occupation (27,000 in November 2012) fell slightly in the past five years and rose slightly in the long-term (ten years).

 

 

 

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