Changes to application processing - Australian Embassy Seoul

A special note for our clients and education agent partners in Seoul: The Australian Embassy in Seoul has now closed their visa application 'drop-box', something which had been a fixture in the Australian Embassy. However, the Embassy will continue to process certain applications although these will now need to posted or provided directly to counter staff. For help with any applications, please feel free to contact us at GA Consulting Co. Ltd visa@gamigration.com  






Changes to Australia's Significant Investor Program

Matthew Halliday MARN 0701626

Significant Investor Program Changes

A major change has been announced under the significant investor pathway requiring potential investors to now invest more of their funds in emerging and venture companies. From July 1 onwards, applicants will be required to invest at least AUD5 million over four years in the following proportions:

  • At least AUD500,000 in venture capital and growth private equity funds which invest in start-ups and small private companies.
  • At least AUD1.5 million in approved managed funds investing in emerging companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange.
  • A ‘balancing investment’ of at least AUD3 million in managed funds that may invest in a range of assets, including ASX-listed companies, Australian corporate bonds or notes, annuities and commercial real estate.

Please note that direct investment in residential real estate will continue to be prohibited and indirect investment in residential property through managed funds will now be strictly limited. With that said, applicants who wish to invest additional funds in property separate from the 5 million needing to be investing in comply investments will still be able to as long as they comply with Australia foreign investment laws.

Finally, investments must not be used as security or collateral for a loan. This closes a loop hole that was previously being exploited by some fund manages to allow investors to invest back into real estate through using the equity on their investments.

Premium Investor Visa Introduction

The Australian immigration department has also introduced the new 'Premium Investor Visa' for people with a cool 15 million to invest into Australian investments or philanthropic activities. The main advantage of this visa is that permanent residence can be obtained in as little as 12 months. This compares very favourably with the Significant Investor Pathway, under which applicants will only be entitled to a visa after maintaining their visa for a period of 4 years. Being a premium visa option, this visa will only be given to select applicants suggested by Austrade (the Australian Trade Commission). 

As both of these visas are of a complex nature, we strongly suggest that potential migrants appoint an experience and registered migration professional to assist them in managing the visa process and the various other professionals that will likely be required as part of the process.

Contact us

GA Consulting's team of Immigration professionals can assist in dealing with any and all changes to the Australian migration law. If you need any help to navigate through the legislation and policy, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Matthew Halliday
MARN 0701626
+82 02 2058 1119






Significant Investor Visa Suspended

Matthew Halliday MARN 0701626 

The significant investor visa program (SIV) is to be suspended on 24 April 2015 before reopening on 1 July 2015 under revised requirements.

The government proposes to direct a significant portion of the SIV applicantsfunds into assets it deems of higher economic value however these are also likely to increase risk to investors. It is expected that the changes will contain a mandatory $1 million investment in Venture Capital Funds and around 1.5 million in Small and Micro Cap Companies. The remainder will however be able to be placed into managed funds. The Premium Investor Visa program however will have no limits on complying investments with the exception of investments in residential real estate or loan back arrangements.


We will provide further information on the changes as more information becomes available.






RSMS Changes - Cert IV & 2 years of Work Experience Requirement

CHANGES TO THE 187 Regional sponsored migration scheme VISA FOR CERTIFICATE IV HOLDERS

Matthew Halliday, RMA 0701626, Admitted as a Solcitor (QLD)


Over the last few years, the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection has been requiring applicants who apply for occupations like cooks, mechanics or hairdressers to hold at least a Certificate III and 2 years of post qualification experience. While the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) states that a Cert IV can substitute for the Cert III and 2 years of  post graduate experience, the Department  was requiring Cert IV holders to also have completed 2 years post graduation experience. 

However a recent decision by the MRT has led the Immigration Department to update their policy. The MRT accepted in this case that the Department's policy had gone beyond merely annotating the legislation, it had in fact raised the required amount of experience to a level that would need to be legislation not just policy.

So what does all this mean for applicants looking to apply for a subclass 187 RSMS visa? In effect, applicants who hold a Cert IV should no longer be required to also have at least 2 years of relevant post-qualification work experience prior to being able to satisfy the requirements for a subclass 187 RSMS visa.

This is a timely change in direction by the Department given recent statistics from the Department showing that Australia was failing in attracting the necessary number of skilled tradespeople vital to the nation's economic growth.

The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visa is a permanent resident visa which requires sponsorship from an employer in a regional or low growth area in need of a skilled worker they have been unable to find within Australia. Having much lower obligations than the subclass 457 visa, it is often an attractive choice for both employers and employees.

The 187/RSMS is an attractive visa option for both employees and employers alike as employees gain the security of permanent residence while employers do not face any immigration obligations once the visa is granted.

If you wish to sponsor someone who holds a Cert IV or hold a Cert IV yourself and have been holding back on applying for an RSMS visa, please feel free to contact us for further information.


82 2 2058 1119








457 Visa News: South Korea now exempt from labour market testing

Matthew Halliday MARN 0701626

Yesterday afternoon, the Australian Immigration Department (DIBP) sent out a notice to registered migration agents that that the Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement (KAFTA) is scheduled to enter into force from tomorrow, 12 December 2014.

The effect of the obligations under the KAFTA is that labour market testing will no longer be applied to Korean nationals/permanent residents or to employees of businesses in Korea transferring to an Australian branch of that business being nominated under the 457 programme.

This will put South Korean businesses on the same playing field as other countries that have concluded free trade agreements with Australia including Chile, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and the United States.

Practically, it should allow for faster processing of nominations and reduce the overall cost to Korean companies dispatching employees to their Australian offices.

According to Trade Minister Andrew Robb in a recent media release,  “KAFTA is expected to result in an annual boost to the economy of close to $650 million when fully implemented.  It’s also projected to create many thousands of jobs over the next decade, helping to underwrite our prosperity for years to come...” .