Orana signs Designated Area Migration Agreement

Employers in the Orana region in the central west and western region of New South Wales have been given a boost after a new migration agreement was announced to attract skilled workers to the region.

Orana joins the Northern Territory, South Australia, Kalgoorlie-Boulder and Victoria’s Great South Coast, to enter into a five-year Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA).

The Orana DAMA will cover Dubbo Regional Council and Mid-Western Regional Council along with the Local Government Areas of Bogan, Bourke, Brewarrina, Cobar, Coonamble, Gilgandra, Narromine, Walgett, Warren and Warrumbungle.

The agreement will assist a range of industries including agriculture, health, hospitality and construction, helping to drive economic growth and fill critical employment gaps.

Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs David Coleman said the Federal Government is working to address the skills needs of regional Australia.

“The Morrison Government is working to support the growth of regions and match our migration program with labour market needs, particularly in regional Australia,” he explained said. “We have seen the success of the DAMA arrangement in the Northern Territory and the Government is committed to supporting the skills needs of regional Australia where Australian workers are not available to fill those jobs.”

Meanwhile, Chairman of Regional Development Australia (RDA) – Orana, John Walkom said this was a fantastic outcome for the Orana region.

“RDA Orana are proud that Orana is the first region to have an agreement of this kind in NSW,” Mr Walkom said.  “The region is on the cusp of an unprecedented boom, with over AUS$7.9 billion worth of projects planned for the next five years. RDA Orana have identified these projects will amount to over 5,000 jobs in the region and with our current unemployment rate at a record low of 2.8 per cent, skilled migration will be essential to maintain productivity.”

The Australian Government has pledged to continue to engage and work with regions around the country experiencing skill shortages to find tailored solutions through the use of a DAMA.

In addition to DAMAs, the Government has made changes to expand the Working Holiday Maker program and recently announced new measures to support the regions.

This includes introducing two new regional visas for skilled workers, tertiary scholarships to attract students to regional Australia and giving international students access to an additional year of post-study work rights if they study and live in regional Australia.

Article published 5th April 2019