Australia will invite foreign workers amid the labor shortage
The new Northern Territory Designated Area Migration Agreement (NT DAMA) lets the Northern Territory (NT) employers sponsor skilled and semi-skilled overseas workers for positions they are unable to fill with local workers. It is the second version of the NT DAMA and applies to the whole of the NT and is tailored to address current and emerging labour market shortages and local terms and conditions of employment.
NT DAMA utilises the labour agreement stream of the Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482), businesses enter into a labour agreement with the Australian Government and workers are then granted a subclass 482 visa.
Note: The NT DAMA is an employer-sponsored visa program and individual workers cannot apply for a visa independently.
The key elements of NT DAMA are:
- pathways to permanent residency for NT DAMA visa holders (including transitional arrangements for existing visa holders)
- a broad range of occupations that reflect NT skilled and semi-skilled shortages, with no caveats to apply
- English language concessions for some occupations
- salary concessions that reflect NT market rates, ensuring that worker terms and conditions of employment are not eroded, and NT businesses and consumers are not subjected to inflationary costs
- a range of risk and integrity actions to ensure that the rights of both employees and employers are protected
a five year agreement to reduce red tape.
Users of the Northern Territory Designated Area Migration Agreement
Businesses can access the NT DAMA if they are actively operating in the NT and:
- are viable and have been operating for at least 12 months
- have no history of not meeting its obligations to employees
- are looking to employ overseas workers to fill full-time positions with duties that align with one of the occupations on the NT DAMA list
- can demonstrate they cannot fill the position locally with Australian citizens or permanent residents
- can provide terms and conditions of employment to overseas workers that are in accordance with those offered to Australian workers employed in the region.