Australia COVID-19 Temporary Visa Holder Border Entry Exemption

Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL)

In order to support Australia’s businesses to fill critical skills shortage from the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australian Government has identified 3 key sectors to be given priority in terms of visa processing and travel exemptions for temporary visa holders to enter Australia. These sectors were identified based on advice from the National Skills Commission and consultation with relevant Commonwealth agencies and they are the healthcare, the construction and the information technology (ICT) sector.

The Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL) has been introduced and has come into effect from 1 September 2020 with an initial 17 occupations listed on the PMSOL. These 17 occupations and its corresponding ANZSCO code are:

The occupation on the PMSOL list is valid as of the time of writing and will be subjected to amendments from time-to-time.

Priority Processing of Nomination & Visa Applications

The processing of the nomination & visa application associated with an occupation specified in the PMSOL in the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS), Employer Sponsored, Regional Sponsored or Skilled Regional Points-tested visa program will be given highest priority. All other skilled occupation lists will remain active, but the PMSOL occupations will take precedence over other occupations not in the PMSOL.

Visa subclasses in the TSS, Employer Sponsored, Regional Sponsored or Skilled Regional Points-tested visa program include:

Similarly, all applications through the Global Talent Visa Program and Subclass 188 Business Innovation & Investment (Provisional) visa will has the same priority processing as the occupations in the PMSOL. For Subclass 188 visa program, Subclass 188 visa application in the Significant Investor stream will take precedence over other streams.

COVID-19 Border Entry Exemption for Visa Holders

Under the priority arrangements, Subclass 482/494/489/491 temporary visa holder associated with occupations in the PMSOL will be able to apply for travel exemption to enter Australia’s border which is currently closed to most of the international travellers and temporary visa holders as of the time of writing. However, visa holder approved to enter Australia will still be subject to strict 14 days quarantine upon entry at the visa holder’s own expense. Quarantine charges varies across different Australian states. Individuals granted a visa under the Global Talent Visa Program do not require a travel exemption but quarantine requirements still apply.

Application for COVID-19 border travel exemption has to be made at least 2 weeks prior to planned travel into Australia. Ausdirect Migration can assist you with applying for travel exemption, so do not hesitate to contact us for assistance.

Full joint media release can be accessed here.

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