The Department of Immigration has just released information on the two invitation rounds in August 2017.
It would appear that there will be only 2000 invitations for Subclass 189 visas per month this year, which means a lower total number of invitations than for the previous financial year (29130 invitations issued). This is possibly to leave places in the skilled program for the newly introduced Subclass 189 New Zealand Citizen stream.
In August, only applicants who had 65 points received invitations for Subclass 189 visas, though applicants on 60 points received invitations for subclass 489 Family Sponsored (FS) visas (there were only 210 invitations for the 489 FS visas in July, increasing to 256 for August, but it is not clear if this number of invitations is expected to continue in the coming months). With a small number of invitations issued in June 2017, it appears there was a backlog of people with high scores in the system. Hopefully in the coming months there will be a lowering of the score required to receive an invitation for a Subclass 189 visa.
Accountants, Auditors and ICT Business Analysts required 75 points to get an invitation, and as these are occupations that are subject to pro rata arrangements, it is expected that this high score will be required for the coming months. Other occupations subject to pro rata arrangements are Electronic Engineers, Other Engineering Professionals (such as Engineering Technologists, Biomedical Engineers and Agricultural Engineers), Software and Applications Programmers and Computer Network professionals. This indicates that there is a large number of people with these occupations in the system waiting for an invitation, so the points required for these are also expected to remain high.
The next invitation rounds will be on the 6th and 20th September 2017. With places remaining tight this year for many occupations, it will be important to ensure that your EOI is correct and that coveted invitation is not wasted.
Please contact our experienced Skilled Migration team if you want advice on your options or if you are looking at lodging an Expression of Interest (EOI) in the near future.