Australia Horticulture Labour Agreement
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Australia Horticulture Labour Agreement – New Pathways To PR

The Australian Government has announced a new horticulture labour agreement to increase access to skilled and semi-skilled migrant workers for the horticulture industry.

The new agreement will help Australian farmers hire low-skilled and skilled foreign workers, where Australian workers are not available.

The new horticulture labour agreement became effective on the 1st of January 2020. The agreement provides concession in minimum salary and English languages with the English requirement lowered to just a score of 5 on IELTS. There are also age concessions with employers being able to sponsor foreign workers up to 50 years of age.

Australia Horticulture Labour Agreement Occupations

Employers in the horticulture industry would be able to sponsor foreign workers in 31 eligible occupations under the new labour agreement. The following Occupations are available under the new horticulture labour agreement:

Approved occupation ANZSCO Code or nearest equivalent ANZSCO Skill Level Positive Skills Assessment TSMIT Concession English Concession Permanent Pathway
Irrigation Designer/ Manager 234111* 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Agronomist 234112 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Entomologist 234518* 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Horticulture Grower 070499* 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Protected Cropping Grower 070499* 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Horticulture Research &
Development Officer
132511* 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Mechanical Engineer 233512 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Horticulture Farm Manager 070499* 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Quality Assurance Manager 139914 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Biosecurity Officer 311399* 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Facility Plant Manager 149913* 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Facility Supervisor 070499* 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Maintenance Electrician 341111* 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fitter and Welder 323213 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Agriculture Technician 321212* 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Mechanic 321211* 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Senior Nurseryperson 362411 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Nurseryperson 362411 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Nursery Supervisor 362411 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Truck Driver 733111 4 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Mobile Plant Operator 721111 4 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Fork Lift Driver 721311 4 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Irrigationist 841999 5 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Irrigationist Assistant 841999 5 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Horticulture Section
Manager
070499* 5 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Section Supervisor 070499* 4 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Production Horticulture
Supervisor
070499* 4 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Production Horticulturist 070499* 3 Yes^ Yes Yes Yes
Machinery Manager 149913 or 149999* 4 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Machinery Supervisor 149999* 4 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cold Storage Manager 149999* 3 Yes Yes Yes Yes
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Note: Labour market testing requirements for the standard TSS and SESR visa programs will need to be met.

* Where an occupation in the table above does not exist in ANZSCO, the closest equivalent occupation available under ANZSCO has been utilised. Where no close equivalent exists, code 070499 is used with the relevant skills/qualifications specified under the terms of each Labour Agreement.

^ Skill and qualification requirements will differ from those stipulated in ANZSCO and will be specified under the terms of each Labour Agreement.

What can a Horticulture Industry Labour Agreement be used for?

The Horticulture Industry Labour Agreement can be used by Australian employers for the following:

  • Sponsor overseas workers for the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) (subclass 482) visa for a total of 31 approved occupations.
  • Sponsor overseas workers for permanent residency under the:
    • Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (SESR) (subclass 494) visa program with a permanent pathway to a Permanent Residence (Skilled Regional) visa (subclass 191) available after three years; or
    • Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) (subclass 186) visa program after a three or four year transitional period on a TSS visa—three years for approved Skill Level 1-3 occupations and four years for approved Skill Level 4-5 occupations.
  • Access the following concessions to standard skilled visa requirements:
    • Discount of up to 10% on the Temporary Skill Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) where it is demonstrated that equivalent Australian workers do not receive annual earnings of $53,900.
    • A broader range of monetary payments (e.g. regularised overtime) and non-monetary benefits (e.g. accommodation) can be counted as guaranteed earnings.
    • For the TSS visa—overseas workers must score at least IELTS 5.0 overall, and at least IELTS 4.0 in each individual component score. For the ENS and SESR visas—overseas workers must score at least IELTS 5.0 overall, and at least IELTS 4.5 in each individual component score.
    • Overseas workers can be up to 50 years of age when they apply for an ENS or SESR visa.
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Does the new Australia Horticulture Labour Agreement open up new opportunities for you down under? Let us know in our comments.

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Written by Mark

As the founder of Getting Down Under, Mark is passionate about demystifying the process associated with a move to Australia. Having launched Getting Down Under in early January 2006 and made the move to Australia from the UK in the same year, Mark continues to share resources and support for those looking for assistance. If you have a question for Mark, please post in our Community Forums. Please note All information provided on Getting Down Under should be considered in conjunction with our disclaimer. Please seek professional advice if you have any doubts!

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