Australian High Commission
India
High Commission address: 1/50 G Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021 Telephone: +91-11-4139 9900, After hours: +91-11-41399977, Fax: +91-11-4149 4490

PA/38/11                                                               22 September 2011

Faster and Easier Visas for Indian students studying in Australian Universities

The Australian High Commissioner to India, Mr Peter Varghese, today welcomed the announcement of changes to Australia’s student visas requirements.

Mr Varghese said the changes were significant, would enhance the competitiveness of Australia’s international education sector and would result in easier and faster visas for Indian students in a range of Australian university courses.

Under the new arrangements international students enrolled in courses at the level of bachelor degree or higher will be treated as lower risk applicants regardless of their country of origin. This will mean less onerous financial and documentary requirements for students in this category.

Students undertaking vocational courses, including with private education providers, would continue to be assessed against the higher assessment levels although financial requirements would also be reduced for these students.

The changes will also allow for a two to four year post-study work visa for university graduates depending on the level of study completed.

These and other changes were announced today by the Australian Ministers for Tertiary Education, Skills, Jobs and Workplace Relations, Senator Chris Evans and the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen MP. The full text of their joint announcement is attached.

These changes will be progressively implemented from late 2011, with the full complement of changes expected to be finalised in the first half of 2012.

The changes are in response to the report by the Hon Michael Knight AO on the Strategic Review of the Student Visa Program 2011 which was also released today. Mr Knight visited India in February/March 2011 as part of his review.

Further information on the changes can be found on the website of the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship at: http://www.immi.gov.au/students/knight

(See link below for joint announcement by the Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Jobs and Workplace Relations, Senator Chris Evans, and the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen MP.)
http://www.minister.immi.gov.au/media/cb/2011/cb172439.htm