The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) has released the new Skilled Occupations List (SOL) for 2016-17, which will come into effect from 1 July 2016.

The Skilled Occupations List is used for 189 (Skilled Independent Visa), 489 (Skilled Regional Provisional Visa) and 485 (Graduate Temporary Visa) visa applications.

The DIBP has also released the Consolidated Sponsored Occupations List (CSOL) which is used for 190 (Skilled Nominated Visa), 457 (Temporary Work Skilled Visa) and 186 (Employer Nominated Scheme) visa applications.

Out of the 190,000 permanent migration places available, 128,550 places have been allocated for Skilled Migrants; a steady yearly increase.

Skilled migration is not nationally biased as long as applicants hold the necessary qualifications to contribute to the Australian labour market, however, the process can be extremely complicated due to the strict occupational requirements when assessing your nominated occupation.

It is imperative you nominate an occupation from the Skilled Occupations List (SOL) if you are applying for an Independent or Family Sponsored Points Tested visa or Temporary Graduate (subclass 485) – Graduate Work Stream.

Occupations in trade dominate the 2016-’17 SOL, including those of motor mechanics, chefs, metal fabricators, bricklayers, carpenters and painting trade workers. Accountants and IT-related professions such as systems analysts, developer programmers, software engineers and analyst programmers are also in demand. New categories also include audiologists, orthotists and prosthetists.

Electrical engineering, electronics engineering, mechanical engineering are high on the list, while metallurgists, mining and petroleum engineers have been removed from last year’s catalog.

Occupational health and safety advisers, environmental health officers, dental technicians, hygienists, prosthetists and therapists have also been excluded in the 2016-’17 selection.

The 457 temporary visa program is the most popular for foreign workers trying to get into Australia, with about 50,000 applications per year. This visa allows people to work in the country for up to four years, during which they are allowed to bring their family to work or study. The program also allows travel in and out of Australia as often as the holders desire.

For further information on skill assessment and requirements visit or