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PM Blames COVID-19 For Expected 85% Fall In Migration Numbers

Scott Morrison picture

Shocking statement by the prime minister: Australia’s migration intake to fall 85 per cent due to coronavirus, Scott Morrison says

Prime Minister Scott Morrison predicted on Friday that Australia’s net overseas migration numbers would drop by 85 per cent in the 2020-21 financial year, compared to 2018-19 numbers.

Now it is time to recognise the importance of the migration and international students in Australia and how they contribute to the economy. The input migrants have made to the economy, together with the industries driven by migration like the education and tourism, have kept Australia out of recession for many years. The future recovery of the economy from the Covid-19 pandemic induced downturn will also depend on the migration and revitalization of the international student numbers. 

 

There is no valid reason for this huge drop, foreshadowed by the Prime Minister, to occur. Australia already has a big number of former and current international students who have Expression Of Interests already in the system. There are also many temporary workers here, such as doctors, nurses, aged care workers, chefs and many more contributing to this economy. We do not have to import any new migrants right now from overseas to grant more permanent visas because they are already here. The cut in new permanent resident visa numbers has already happened because of ridiculously low number of invitations for the 189 visa being rolled out each month. Anyone can see this cut is not due to the pandemic – it is due to the government policy

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The PM is not doing the country any good justifying the cut in migration by blaming the pandemic and I’m afraid Labour is not any better – they see cutting migration as a panacea for unemployment. Kristina Keneally, Labour’s spokesperson for home affairs, has called for an overhaul of the migration system to give Australians a “first go at jobs” following the coronavirus pandemic.

 

She also said Australia should use the Covid-19 border closures to reconsider the country’s economic reliance on temporary migrants and encourage unemployed Australians to fill the labour gaps. Sadly, the xenophobic line “jobs for Australian first” has been spun be both parties even though there is no economic justification for cutting the migration numbers

 

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