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The end of the COVID-19 concession period on November 25, 2023. The concession period was implemented in response to the pandemic and provided temporary measures for certain visa applicants who were affected by travel restrictions and had difficulty meeting visa requirements. Now that all international travel restrictions have been lifted, travelers to Australia no longer need to provide vaccination information or seek travel exemptions. Ending the concession period is aimed at restoring integrity to the migration system and ensuring that unintended cohorts do not access concessions.

The termination of the concession period will play a significant role in establishing an efficiently managed migration system. This action will help preserve the system’s integrity by preventing unintended groups from benefiting from concessions. The visa programs affected by the elimination of the initial concession period include:

1. Employer Sponsored visas:

New nominations for certain visa streams will require Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) holders to have worked with their sponsoring employer or in the relevant occupation for a specific period of time. Concessions related to work experience requirements and age exemptions for certain visa applications will no longer apply.

2. Skilled Regional Visa (subclass 887):

The concessions available during the COVID-19 concession period, such as shorter employment and residence requirements, will no longer be applicable after November 25, 2023. Eligible skilled provisional visa holders applying for a subclass 887 visa must be in Australia, but not in immigration clearance, when applying.

3. Certain Family program visa applicants:

removed restrictions on the location requirement at the time of visa grant. Applicants who applied before November 26, 2023, and were in Australia during the concession period, will continue to be eligible for visa grant in Australia. However, the concessions will not apply to applicants who were not in Australia during the COVID-19 concession period.

4. Business Innovation and Investment Program visas:

Eligible applicants have a three-month period after the end of the concession period to make a valid application. The Safe Haven Enterprise Visa pathway program will be minimally impacted by the end of the COVID-19 concession period, as a permanent visa pathway option has been provided through the Resolution of Status (RoS) visa.

5. Temporary Graduate visa program:

Must be lodged starting from November 25, 2023 in Australia. Subsequent entrant applications can be lodged in or outside of Australia, but not in immigration clearance.