A recent measure introduced by the Australian government in light of the recent political developments has automatically granted 10,000 Hong Kong passport holders in Australia a five year extension of their visas, creating a path to permanent residency.
Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge said in a statement that “Australia has a long history of attracting Hong Kong’s best and brightest who have contributed significantly to our economic growth and job creation, and we are committed to ensuring this is further strengthened,” and, “we know that recent events in Hong Kong mean that many highly talented individuals will want to remain in or relocate to a free, democratic country like Australia, and these new arrangements will ensure we’re attracting those who create jobs and opportunities for Australians.”
In addition to the 10,000 people already in Australia, Home Affairs advised there were a further 2,500 visa holders outside Australia and 1,250 applications under way. With those who receive the five year extension being able to apply for permanent residency at the end of that period. Those who study at a regional campus and choose to live in regional areas will be able to after only three years.
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(Although our office is based in Melbourne, immigration is under the federal legislative framework and we can assist applicants based in or interested in any part of Australia.)