Australia unveils major changes to citizenship process

Examining Consequences Of Australia's 457 Visa Abolition Centre

The move comes days after Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull's visit to India

Ms Templeman said scrapping 457 Visas would not necessarily lead to more Australians in work.

In addition because of the drastic time-frame in which the changes were implemented, a number of South African citizens now in the process of applying for a visa or citizenship have reportedly been left in the lurch, having already spent thousands of rands on applications and the emigration process.

Speaking at a breakfast for the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Canberra yesterday, Mr Turnbull also revealed more changes to conditions for migrants applying for permanent residency.

A day after the USA and Australia announced tightening of their skilled visa programmes, India said it was consulting both foreign governments and other stakeholders to assess the impact on its outwardly mobile skilled workforce.

"I think that there are measures that need to be taken before people take out Australian citizenship".

Echoing US President Donald Trump's crackdown, Turnbull said the new regime "will be manifestly, rigorously, resolutely conducted in the national interest to put Australians and Australian jobs first".

Applicants will also be required to have lived in Australia as a permanent resident for at least four years - up from one year - and will only be allowed to fail the citizenship test three times. Now a permanent resident can become a citizen after one year.

"Labor has been saying we should prioritise Australian jobs", she said.

"The new visa will better target genuine skills shortages, including in regional Australia", said Mr Turnbull.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was quick to defend the new "Australian values" test, a part of the modified requirements to become an Australian citizen.

Announcing the visa change in a video on his Facebook, Prime Minster Malcolm Turnbull said his Government are putting "Australians first".

In fact, the abolition of 457 visa program came when Prime Minister Turnbull visited India last week and both the countries signed several agreements to boost bilateral relations.

The 457 visa is used by over 95,000 temporary foreign workers with many of them being Indian nationals.

A total of 23,205 Irish citizens were in Australia on temporary visas on June 30th 2015, while current holders will be unaffected by the move.

"We see this change as evolutionary and a new policy of the Australian government".

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