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Learn about migrant worker option at Ag-Quip

DIAC Regional Outreach Officer (NSW), Philomena Leong and RDANI Project Officer, Kim-Trieste Hastings.
DIAC Regional Outreach Officer (NSW), Philomena Leong and RDANI Project Officer, Kim-Trieste Hastings.

Regional Development Australia Northern Inland (RDANI) will again join officers from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) at Ag-Quip in Gunnedah on 17, 18 and 19 August. RDANI Project Officer, Kim-Trieste Hastings said that they will be on hand to talk about migration matters and answer employer enquiries in the NSW Farmers’ Association site.

“We work in collaboration with Immigration regarding employer sponsored visas for our region,” Ms Hastings said.

Ms Hastings explained why it is important and relevant for RDANI and Immigration to be among the record breaking list of exhibitors at Ag-Quip 2010. “The more we attend these events, the more we understand just how difficult employers in the agricultural sector are finding it to attract and retain employees in Northern Inland NSW,” she said. “Where no suitably qualified employees can be found in the local area, a skilled migrant may be the answer. Migrants have already contributed to the economic development of the New England North West region. Farm and rural businesses who have taken advantage of this skilled migration program in the Northern Inland region have continued to grow and remain competitive in this challenging industry.”

Migrant labour has and continues to demonstrate its importance to the development of Northern Inland NSW. Given the ongoing labour shortages in rural and regional Australian, skilled migration can mean a great deal to individual businesses and entire industries. “We were able to help a farmer near Boggabri, for example. Access to the employer sponsored visa program made a huge difference to him. It enabled him to bring in an overseas worker with the skills he required, so his farming operations could continue to function and expand,” Ms Hastings said.

“I’d like to see employers in the region, who are finding it very difficult to attract skilled labour for their particular occupations come along and have a chat to us at Ag-Quip.”

“Ag-Quip presents a rare opportunity to discuss often complex issues with Immigration Officers face-to-face,” Ms Hastings said.

The Immigration/RDANI stand in the NSW Farmers’ site will also be able to talk about short-term visas for migrants with special trade skills (ranging from a few months to four years) and general immigration queries.

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