Australia helps Queensland reconstruction through immigration

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The Australian government will make it easier for employers to bring in temporary overseas workers to help with the reconstruction efforts in Queensland.

Queensland was devastated by flooding in December and January which resulted in thousands of people being forced to evacuate. The economic damage is is estimated at about $10 billion.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard promised to fast-track visa applications for employer-sponsored temporary skilled migrants who join the rebuilding effort.

"Skilled labour will be as important as funding for rebuilding," Gillard said.

"There will be extra resources, assistance to employers and simpler processes to ensure a five-day turnaround for decision-ready applications," she added.

Gillard originally campaigned on a promise to reduce immigration.