From horse riding instructors to pig farmers - Australia wants your skills

An Australian skills shortage in certain categories is attracting increased interest from South Africans who are experts in these fields, Jamie-Lee Krumm, a migration assistant at Sable International, tells Fin24.

The "most wanted" skills needed include medicine, education, ICT, engineering, trade workers like electricians, plumbers and carpenters, as well as those in the arts.

The more unusual skills on the list include horse riding instructors, landscape gardeners, acupuncturists, naturopaths and pig farmers.

According to Krumm, their office has received a number of enquiries about the Temporary Skill Shortage visa, since Australia recently released a new list of skills in demand. This visa temporarily allows an employer to sponsor a suitably skilled worker to fill a position in their Australian business.

This visa also lets someone who qualifies establish their business in Australia and provides a pathway from temporary to permanent residence. The visa allows you to work in Australia for up to four years and, if eligible, you can apply for permanent residence.

The Australian government conducts research annually across the country in some 80 fields to ascertain where there might be a shortage of skilled workers.

On its website, there is currently updated data available for various employment clusters, including engineering, automotive trades, healthcare, the food industry, teaching, child care and others. 

The research is also broken down by state. 

Importing skills 

According to Krumm, a wide variety of South Africans has approached Sable International with enquiries regarding the temporary skills shortage visa. 

She believes Australia understands the value of importing important skills. However, she adds, it is important to ensure you qualify before applying for such a visa, whether you want to be employed by an Australian company or whether you wish to take your own business there. 

She says that, besides having to meet the migration requirements involved, you should also take the tax and investment implications into account.