Australia to open on 15 Dec 2021 and more benefits for Hong Kong passport holders

Australia will open for fully-vaccinated temporary visa holders on 15 Dec 2021 to enter Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption. Hong Kong passport holders also receive a suite of visa advantages.

Student visa holders as well as working holiday visa holders and temporary skilled visa holders that have received two covid-19 vaccinations will be able to enter Australia. The move extends to holders of New Zealand citizen family relationship visas, protection visas, maritime crew visas, retirement visas and prospective marriage visas.

The country planned to open on 1 December 2021 but uncertainties over the omicron variant of the virus has pushed the border reopening date by two weeks. Visa holders may still need to quarantine or isolate, depending on which State or Territory they land.

The Australian government will also open a new stream of the 189 skilled independent for Hong Kong passport holders from 5 March 2022. The new stream means that Hong Kong passport holders will be able to apply for permanent residence if they have held a temporary skills shortage visa (482 or 457) or a 485 temporary graduate visa for 4 years and have been usually resident in Australia during that time.

Hong Kong passport holders also benefit from a new stream under the 191 skilled regional visa. Under this visa stream, applicants can receive permanent residence if they hold a 457, 482 or 485 visa, have lived, worked and/or studied in a regional area for 3 years and have been usually resident in Australia during that time.

There is no minimum annual income threshold ($53,900) for this visa stream. The concessions are available for both Hong Kong SAR and Hong Kong British National Overseas passport holders.

To find out more details on these visa opportunities, please contact our team on (07) 5591 5099 who will be happy to answer any questions.

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Author: Sed Crest

Directors: Ian Kennedy & Sophie Pearson

Date: 9 December 2021

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