Oz regional areas call for more immigrants

A number of leaders representing Australia’s regional areas and smaller cities have called for visa changes to encourage immigrants to settle away from the main areas.

As debate rages on regarding whether annual immigrant intake numbers should be cut, smaller regional areas are calling for changes to ensure wider distribution of where people settle. A cut in immigration numbers, they argue, would be disastrous to their economies.

“Curtailing migrant numbers to help cities like Melbourne and Sydney is ludicrous when you consider the harm it will cause to places like Adelaide and much of the nation’s regional areas where some communities are struggling to survive,” Jodie van Deventer, the chief executive for the Committee for Adelaide, told The Australian newspaper.

Instead, Ms van Deventer said visa conditions that required migrants to live only in cities such as Adelaide, Hobart or Darwin “must be considered as part of a population decentralisation strategy”.

“It would ease pressure on Sydney and Melbourne and create opportunities for cities such as Adelaide,”

Other business leaders such as BankSA chief executive Nick Reade have also called for changes to visas to encourage skilled or semi-skilled migrant families to the regions.

Article published 23rd April 2018