Migrants continue to make as strong a contribution to Australia as ever, according to the recently released statistics by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

The statistics show that the median employee income of migrant taxpayers in 2016-17 was $49,438, slightly higher than the median employee income for all Australian taxpayers, which is $49,412.

Skilled migrants had a median employee income of $59,304, well above the median income for all Australians.

FECCA Chairperson Mary Patetsos said the statistics demonstrate how essential migrants are to a healthy economy. “These statistics released by the ABS today confirm just how strong a contribution migrants make to the Australian economy,” she said.

“The figures also dispel the pervasive myth that migrants are a drain on the economy and government services.

READ MORE: Migrant workers shot in pay dispute

“In fact, the median income for migrants is slightly higher than it is for all Australians, which means that the tax paid by migrants to help fund our hospitals, schools and other services is also likely to be about the same or slightly higher than the median for all Australians.

“These statistics do reveal, however, that migrants in the humanitarian stream need greater levels of support as they transition to the workforce in Australia.

“That improved support should include more flexible English language training and better employment services – both of which were identified in the recently released Shergold Report.

“We look forward to following the implementation of the Government’s response to the Shergold Report with the aim of improving employment and other outcomes for recently arrived migrants.

READ MORE: Migrant workers and ethnic communities

“We also need to fix the system when it comes to recognising skills and qualifications obtained overseas. Many migrants are not able to realise their full potential, especially humanitarian visa holders who don’t have their skills recognised due to the complexity of the system, huge cost, and lack of support. This is a missed opportunity for Australia.”