New migrants to be forced to live outside Sydney and Melbourne

Remigio Civitarese
Ottobre 12, 2018

The main driver of population growth in Sydney and Melbourne was overseas migration, with 87% of skilled migrants to Australia and nearly all refugees gravitating to those cities.

Existing regional visas only divert around 5,000 of the annual permanent intake, which is capped at 190,000 places.

Under the current system only 5,000 of Australia's annual intake of 190,000 migrants are diverted to regional areas, while the new reform could force almost half of the migration stream to settle in smaller states.

Mr. Tudge said placing conditions on visas that force immigrants to stay in less popular centers for several years would increase the likelihood that they would settle in those places permanently.

"About 45 percent of our visas aren't attached to a geographical location as such, and therefore there are those opportunities to provide those incentives and encouragements to reside elsewhere", Tudge said.

The growth has been largely migration-driven, with most people settling in Melbourne, Sydney and south-east Queensland, according to the government. Do you think it's a good idea to direct migrants to rural and regional areas?

"It's not possible to police the condition without substantial resources, both identifying breaches & sanctioning them".

More details are expected at a press conference on Tuesday. The visa would not apply to those who are sponsored by companies or those on family visas.

The country welcomed 4,766 skilled workers to regional areas in 2016-17, but nearly half settled in Perth.

Minister for Human Services Alan Tudge.

As well, Canberra will work with the states to implement new infrastructure planning and population controls to claw back some of the $25 billion a year in lost economic activity due to city congestion.

Congestion and infrastructure strain in these cities cost the Australian economy Aus$15 billion (US$10.6 billion) a year ago, with annual forecast losses of Aus$40 billion by 2030 if left unchecked, according to government estimates. Four in 10 said the number was too high. Critics worry the proposed new visa rules could lead to labour shortages. They said the level of non-compliance was not "particularly high".

In 2011, Mr Morrison said Labor was making "unrealistic promises that all of this can be turned around by everybody moving to regional areas".

"While the overall population of Australia has been growing at the rapid rate of 1.6 percent per annum, our three large population centres have been some of the fastest-growing cities in the world", Tudge said.

Tudge told 7 Sunrise on October 9: "Our overall objective is to get a better distribution of the population growth across the country".

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