Western Australia Secures 10,000 Skilled Migration Places

The Cook and Albanese Labor Governments are expanding skilled migration in Western Australia, with 10,000 places allocated to address critical shortages in construction, healthcare, and more. Learn about the State Nominated Migration Program (SNMP) and WA Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA), aimed at attracting skilled workers to support economic growth and residential construction.

In a strategic move aimed at addressing critical skills shortages, the Cook and Albanese Labor Governments have finalized an agreement to allocate 10,000 skilled migration places for the 2024-25 period in Western Australia. This initiative is set to significantly bolster the state’s economy, particularly in industries like residential construction and healthcare.

Western Australia

Under the newly inked deal, these migration places will be divided between the State Nominated Migration Program (SNMP) and a newly established WA Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA). Last year, Western Australia saw its SNMP allocation reduced to 2,350 places, but the new agreement will increase this figure to 5,000 places.

The SNMP allows the state government to prioritize skilled migration and nominate eligible migrants who meet specific skills needs, particularly benefiting small and medium-sized enterprises struggling to meet federal visa requirements.

In addition to expanding the SNMP, the state has negotiated the creation of the WA DAMA with the Commonwealth Government. This agreement will allocate 5,000 migration places evenly between metropolitan and regional employers, aiming to attract and retain skilled workers in sectors such as building and construction, health and aged care, tourism and hospitality, and agriculture.

The WA DAMA responds directly to demand for workers in these key areas and will operate alongside existing DAMAs in regions like the Kimberley, Pilbara, Goldfields, and South West.

The WA DAMA is expected to streamline pathways to permanent residency for skilled migrants, offering a broader range of eligible occupations and incentives for settling in regional areas. This move aligns with the state government’s broader efforts to address skill shortages, which include initiatives like providing free and low-fee TAFE courses to train local Western Australians for available jobs.

Premier Roger Cook emphasized Western Australia’s status as an economic powerhouse and highlighted the importance of attracting skilled workers to support economic growth and housing development. He expressed gratitude to the Albanese Government for recognizing the state’s unique needs and supporting efforts to bolster the local workforce through strategic migration policies.

Simone McGurk, Minister for Training and Workforce Development, underscored the significance of securing 10,000 skilled migration places to fill critical positions that cannot be met locally. She highlighted the government’s commitment to training local workers while acknowledging the vital role skilled migrants play in sustaining and diversifying Western Australia’s economy.

The agreement reflects a collaborative effort between state and federal governments to address regional labor market needs and ensure continued economic prosperity for Western Australia and the broader nation.