Western Australia sees sharp increase in skilled migrants

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Businesses in Western Australia (WA) have recorded a sharp increase in the number of Dutch, Malaysian and Irish workers being sponsored to fill skilled job vacancies.

Close to 4000 skilled migrants were granted temporary 457 visas in WA in the second half of last year, an increase of more than 44 percent over the same period in 2009.

There was a substantial increase in clerical and administrative occupations in demand from 40 to 110 positions during the last half of 2010, according to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC). The greatest demand continued to be for workers in Professional level occupations.

Migrants from Malaysia, the Netherlands and Ireland accounted for the majority of skilled workers entering WA on temporary 457 work visas.

Ireland's economic problems have meant that many younger workers have gone abroad to find jobs abroad, with many choosing Australia as their destination Country. The number of Irish entering WA under temporary 457 visas rose by 91 percent in the last six months of 2009.

While there was a sharp increase in the number of Malaysians, Dutch and Irish moving to WA, the UK maintained its position as the dominant source of skilled migrants for WA, with many coming to Australia under the General Skilled Migration program.