The Anglosphere Tightens Visa Rules
The 457 visa programme is used mainly to hire foreign workers in the restaurant, IT and medical industries – the majority came from India, the UK and China.
But PM Malcolm Turnbull said it will be abolished to prioritise the recruitment of Australian nationals.
Critics of 457 said Australian workers lost out to foreign counterparts.
In its place, two new temporary visas will carry additional requirements and draw from a smaller list of eligible professions.
“The new system will be manifestly, rigorously, resolutely conducted in the national interest,” Mr Turnbull said on Tuesday.
The order he will sign on Tuesday will call for “the strict enforcement of all laws governing entry into the United States of labor from abroad for the stated purpose of creating higher wages and higher employment rates for workers in the United States,” one of the senior officials said.
It will call on the departments of Labor, Justice, Homeland Security and State to take action to crack down on what the official called “fraud and abuse” in the U.S. immigration system to protect American workers.
The order will call on those four federal departments to propose reforms to ensure H-1B visas are awarded to the most skilled or highest paid applicant.
H-1B visas are intended for foreign nationals in “specialty” occupations that generally require higher education, which according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) includes, but is not limited to, scientists, engineers or computer programmers. The government uses a lottery to award 65,000 visas every year and randomly distributes another 20,000 to graduate student workers.
And in the UK, the push for independence gains speed with a snap election.
In a surprise statement outside Downing Street on Tuesday morning, the prime minister claimed that opposition parties were jeopardising her government’s preparations for Brexit.
“We need a general election and we need one now,” she said. “I have only recently and reluctantly come to this conclusion but now I have concluded it is the only way to guarantee certainty for the years ahead.”
May claimed the decision she would put to voters in the election, the announcement of which was a tightly guarded secret known only by her closest aides, would be all about “leadership”.
The prime minister may have been swayed by recent polls that placed the Conservatives 21 points ahead of Labour despite a policy blitz by Jeremy Corbyn’s party. She will hope to boost a slim working majority of 17 in order to help pass both domestic and Brexit-linked legislation.