NSW Farmers have cautioned the government that changes to the working visas system needs to ensure the agricultural industry remains strong and competitive.
Association President Derek Schoen said the decision to replace the 457 visa with a new multi-stream Temporary Skill Shortage Visa must guarantee Australian farmers are not negatively impacted.
“Any move that would see red tape added to the visa process could hamper farm productivity and have negative flow on effects for rural and regional economies,” Mr Schoen said.
The new system will comprise of two streams. Short term visas will be issued for two years and medium term visas will be issued for four years when there are more critical skills shortages.
“NSW Farmers’ Association will keep a close eye on the new visa arrangements and will consult with other farming bodies, including the National Farmers’ Federation, to ensure farmers are in no way disadvantaged,” he said.