The Australian Federal Government’s proposed tightening of 457 visas could harm the nation’s financial services sector if it proceeds, with one broker claiming his city could be particularly affected.
Darwin based NSW broking franchise principal, Tony Schelling, says he believes tightening restrictions on the popular work visa could have a major impact on the financial services industry in towns like Darwin, as the sector struggles to compete with higher wages offered by the likes of mining and gas.
“We will struggle to get good, qualified and competent people here when we’ve got a labour force working on $100,000 per year average. They’re not qualified; their job is to hold signs and pour concrete. They’ll be working 12 hour shifts six days a week, but there’s good money to be had and it’s hard to encourage people into the finance sector when the wages are in the $50-60 range.”
While he notes that mortgage brokers immigrating from overseas seldom use the 457 visa, Schelling’s worried that any restrictions could have a wide-reaching effect.