A Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA) is a formal agreement between the Australian Government and a regional, state or territory authority. It provides access to more overseas workers than the standard skilled migration program. DAMAs operate under an agreement-based framework, providing flexibility for regions to respond to their unique economic and labour market conditions.
A DAMA is a two-tier framework covering a defined regional area. The first tier is an overarching five-year deed of agreement (head agreement) with the region’s representative. The second tier comprises individual labour agreements with employers under the settings of the head agreement for that region.
DAMA labour agreements are between the Australian Government and endorsed employers operating within the relevant region. They are:
- generally in effect for five years and
- use the Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) and Employer Nominated Scheme (ENS) visa programs.
2022 DAMA Occupations Lists
As of the date that this post was published (January 2020) there are currently 7 DAMAs in effect supporting regional outcomes which you can find listed below. Each link opens on a new page.
- Northern Territory
- Great South Coast VIC
- WA Goldfields
- Regional SA
- Adelaide City Technology and Innovation Advancement
- Far North QLD
- Orana NSW
DAMA skills assessments (VIC, WA, SA QLD and NSW DAMAs)
VETASSESS is the skills assessing authority for specified DAMA occupations not on the eligible skills lists.
DAMAs enable employers to sponsor overseas workers in a broader range of occupations than the existing skilled migration visa pathways. The occupations approved for each DAMA reflect the unique labour requirements in their region.
Visa applications for DAMA occupations with no skills and experience concessions, and normally available through the skilled migration program, will continue to have their skills assessed by the assessing authority indicated in the relevant legislation.