Immigration Minister Chris Bowen is expected to announce a change in Australia's points based system to encourage immigration of highly skilled professionals with good qualifications.
It is hoped that changes to the points based system will encourage foreign students with high level Australian qualifications to seek permanent residence. It seems likely that immigration will become more difficult for those with trade qualifications and experience in lower-skilled occupations.
"The current weighting of points test factors leads to perverse outcomes such as the situation where a Harvard qualified environmental scientist with three years' relevant work experience would fail the points test, while an overseas student who completes a 92-week course in a 60-point occupation...would, with one year's experience, pass," said the Deparment of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC).
"Australia can, and should, select the best and brightest migrants for independent migration," DIAC added.
Possible changes to the system include more points for higher levels of English language ability and higher degree qualifications. In future it may also be more difficult for older people to gain enough points to qualify under the points based immigration system.
Moreover, bonus points for having relatives in the country or for having Australian qualifications may be axed. If you are a tradesperson and are interested in immigration to Australia you should seriously consider applying now. It is possible that you will not qualify for immigration in future.