Overview of key changes to Skilled Occupation Lists from March 2019

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The Department of Home Affairs has announced changes to the eligible occupations for permanent and temporary visas, with effect from 13 March 2019.

Changes to the Short-term Skilled Occupation List, Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List, and the Regional Occupation List have been made following consultation with the Department of Jobs and Small Business based on the labour market advice provided by the Department.

In the latest update, 36 new occupations have been added to the Medium and Long-Term Skill List, including in engineering, science, ICT and the arts. In addition, 18 new occupations have been added to the Regional Occupation List, the occupations include livestock, beef, dairy, sheep, aquaculture and crop farmers, among other agricultural roles.

Importantly, a number of occupations have been removed from the Short Term Skill List onto the Regional Skill List meaning that those occupations are no longer available to employer sponsors located in metropolitan areas.

Occupations and industries affected

In terms of the Temporary Skills Shortage (subclass 482) visa, employers should take note of the following changes:

Medical Practitioners

Revised eligibility conditions for the following medical practitioner occupations mean that employers now require a Health Workforce Certificate to nominate a position to be filled by a foreign national:

  • general practitioner (ANZSCO code 253111)
  • medical practitioners (nec) (ANZSCO code 253999)
  • resident medical officer (ANZSCO code 253112)

Anaesthetists have been moved from the Short Term to the Regional Occupation list, meaning that these visa sponsorship is limited to employers in regional locations.

Recruitment Consultants

Recruitment Consultants remain on the Short Term list, however the Government has update the conditions that apply to this occupation. The guaranteed annual earnings that must be offered to a TSS visa holder have been reduced to AU$80,000 (previously AU$90,000), presenting a welcome change for employers who sponsor employees in this category.

Telecommunications Network Planner & Pressure Welder

These occupations were not previously appearing on any occupation list, and are now available on the Medium to Long Term List for sponsorship for a 4 year TSS visa.

Multimedia and Software Programmers NEC

Additional ICT occupations have been moved from the Short Term to Medium Term lists, including Multimedia Specialist and Software and Applications Programmers not elsewhere classified. This provides employers access to more technology skills that are not widely available in Australia.


This occupation was moved from the Short Term List to the Regional Occupation is no longer eligible for TSS visa sponsorship in non-regional areas. Employers in metropolitan areas will no longer be able to sponsor Dentists under the standard TSS visa program.

Sporting Organisations

Footballers and Tennis Coaches have moved from the Short Term to the Medium to Long Term list, offering 4 year visas and permanent residence options. In the case of Footballer, visa sponsorship is only available for positions which pay above an annual earnings threshold of AU$120,000.

Artistic Organisations

Occupations in the artistic domain are appearing on the Medium to Long Term list, providing longer term visa options for applicants. This includes the occupations Arts Administrator or Manager, Dancer or Choreographer, Music Director, and Artistic Director.

Agriculture & Farming

Several agricultural occupations have been moved from the Short Term to the Regional Occupation list, including Aquaculture Farmer, Mixed Crop Farmer, and Beef or Dairy Cattle Farmers. New additions to the Regional Occupation list include Deer Farmers and Goat Farmers. In order to sponsor these occupations, the position must be based in a regional area of Australia.

Detailed Summary of the Changes to Skilled Occupation Lists

Added to the Medium to Long Term list (MLTSSL)

  • Telecommunications network planner (ANZSCO code 313213)
  • Pressure welder (ANZSCO code 322312)
  • Environmental Manager (ANZSCO code 139912)
  • Musician (Instrumental) (ANZSCO code 211213)
  • Statistician (ANZSCO code 224113)
  • Economist (ANZSCO code 224311)
  • Mining Engineer (excluding Petroleum) (ANZSCO code 233611)
  • Petroleum Engineer (ANZSCO code 233612)
  • Engineering Professionals nec (ANZSCO code 233999)
  • Chemist (ANZSCO code 234211)
  • Food Technologist (ANZSCO code 234212)
  • Environmental Consultant (ANZSCO code 234312)
  • Environmental Research Scientist (ANZSCO code 234313)
  • Environmental Scientists nec (ANZSCO code 234399)
  • Geophysicist (ANZSCO code 234412)
  • Hydrogeologist (ANZSCO code 234413)
  • Life Scientist (General) (ANZSCO code 234511)
  • Biochemist (ANZSCO code 234513)
  • Biotechnologist (ANZSCO code 234514)
  • Botanist (ANZSCO code 234515)
  • Marine Biologist (ANZSCO code 234516)
  • Microbiologist (ANZSCO code 234517)
  • Zoologist (ANZSCO code 234518)
  • Life Scientists nec (ANZSCO code 234599)
  • Conservator (ANZSCO code 234911)
  • Metallurgist (ANZSCO code 234912)
  • Meteorologist (ANZSCO code 234913)
  • Natural and Physical Science Professionals nec (ANZSCO code 234999)
  • University Lecturer (ANZSCO code 242111)
  • Multimedia Specialist (ANZSCO code 261211)
  • Software and Applications Programmers nec (ANZSCO code 261399)
  • Horse Trainer (ANZSCO code 361112)
  • Physicist – no longer restricted to medical physicist

Added to the Short Term list (STSOL)

  • visual arts and crafts professionals (nec) (ANZSCO code 211499)
  • textile, clothing and footwear mechanic (ANZSCO code 323215)
  • watch and clock maker and repairer (ANZSCO code 323316)
  • chemical plant operator (ANZSCO code 399211)
  • library technician (ANZSCO code 399312)

Moved from the Short Term to Medium Term list

  • arts administrator or manager (ANZSCO code 139911)
  • dancer or choreographer (ANZSCO code 211112)
  • music director (ANZSCO code 211212)
  • artistic director (ANZSCO code 212111)
  • tennis coach (ANZSCO code 452316)
  • footballer (ANZSCO code 452411)

Added to Regional Occupation List

  • deer farmer (ANZSCO code 121314)
  • goat farmer (ANZSCO code 121315)

Added to Regional Occupation List, removed from STSOL

  • aquaculture farmer (ANZSCO code 121111)
  • cotton grower (ANZSCO code 121211)
  • fruit or nut grower (ANZSCO code 121213)
  • grain, oilseed or pasture grower (Aus) / field crop grower (NZ) (ANZSCO code 121214)
  • mixed crop farmer (ANZSCO code 121216)
  • sugar cane grower (ANZSCO code 121217)
  • crop farmers (nec) (ANZSCO code 121299)
  • beef cattle farmer (ANZSCO code 121312)
  • dairy cattle farmer (ANZSCO code 121313)
  • mixed livestock farmer (ANZSCO code 121317)
  • pig farmer (ANZSCO code 121318)
  • sheep farmer (ANZSCO code 121322)
  • livestock farmers (nec) (ANZSCO code 121399)
  • mixed crop and livestock farmer (ANZSCO code 121411)
  • dentist (ANZSCO code 252312)
  • anaesthetist (ANZSCO code 253211)

Removed from Regional Occupation List moved to MLTSSL

  • arts administrator or manager (ANZSCO code 139911)
  • dancer or choreographer (ANZSCO code 211112)
  • music director (ANZSCO code 211212)
  • artistic director (ANZSCO code 212111)
  • tennis coach (ANZSCO code 452316)
  • footballer (ANZSCO code 452411)
  • telecommunications network planner (ANZSCO code 313213)
  • pressure welder (ANZSCO code 322312)

Occupations with added / changed conditions

  • Health Workforce Certificate required for general practitioner, medical practitioners (nec) and resident medical officer
  • Minimum salary of $120,000 pa for footballers, ship’s masters and gas or petroleum operators
  • Minimum salary of $80,000 pa for recruiters

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