Global Talent Visa vs 189 Visa

In November 2019, Global Talent Independent (GTI) program was introduced to attract highly skilled professionals and researchers from selected industry sectors to Australia. Initially when the program was launched, only 5,000 intake was available for the 2019 – 2020 program year, but now the allocation has been tripled to 15,000 under the program for 2020 – 2021 as the Government announced that they will focus on innovators (Global Talent), investors (Business Innovation and Investment Program (BIIP)) and job creators (Employer-Sponsored visas) as a cautious approach to the rebuild its post-COVID economy.

Statistics and Targeted Sectors

According to the 2019 – 2020 Migration Program Report, a total of 4,109 people were granted GTI visas from 5,923 Expressions of Interests (EOIs) over the first seven months. 99.5 % of the lodged GTI visa applications were successful whereas Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189) was 94% successful. The breakdown of grants per targeted sectors were as follows:

Sector Percentage
Quantum Information, Advanced Digital, Data Science and ICT 28%
MedTech 26%
Energy and Mining Technology 20%
AgTech 9%
Space and Advanced Manufacturing 8%
FinTech 6%
Cyber Security 3%

Note: 3,344 applied from onshore and 765 applied from offshore

As of 17 December 2020, targeted sectors for the GTI visa program have increased from seven to ten sectors:

Prior to 17 December 2020 From 17 December 2020
Ag Tech Resources
Space and Advanced Manufacturing Agri-food and AgTech
FinTech Energy
Energy and Mining Technology Health Industries
MedTech Defence, Advanced Manufacturing and Space
Cyber Security Circular Economy
Quantum Information, Advanced Digital, Data Science and ICT DigiTech
Infrastructure and Tourism
Financial Services and FinTech

It is important to note that increase in targeted sectors and allocations for the visa program does not mean that the standard has been lowered.

From 01 July 2020 to 10 October 2020, 3,986 GTI EOI have been submitted (almost 57 EOI daily submissions) and compared to the previous statistics for non-invited (30%), about 44% (1,640) out of the 3,986 applications were not invited.

So, is the Global Talent visa an alternative to applying for skilled visas such as Skilled Independent (subclass 189) visa? Possibly, however, as mentioned above the Global Talent visa aims to attract highly skilled individuals who are at the top of their field and who can make a significant contribution to the Australian economy.

If you are able to demonstrate that you have an internationally recognised record of exception, currently prominent, outstanding achievement in the above ten targeted sectors and meet the following key requirements, you could be eligible to apply the Global Talent visa without having to meet fewer requirements than the 189 visa:

  • Completed PhD in the last 3 years or will be completing one in the next 6 months OR
  • Have the ability to attract a salary at or above the Fair Work High Income threshold (FWHIT) of AUD$162,000 OR
  • Have a job offer to work in Australia with a salary equivalent or more than AUD$162,000
  • Have a *nominator – individual (Australian citizen, permanent resident or an eligible New Zealand citizen) or an Australian organisation
    – Nominator must be in a position of expertise in Australia to be able to verify that you have the international reputation
  • In your field of expertise, evidence that you would be an *asset to Australia in your field of expertise
    – Useful to and benefit the Australian public, including to the Australian economy, social and cultural benefit to the Australian community

When comparing to the 189 visa, key features of the Global Talent visa over 189 visa includes:

  • Not a point tested visa
  • Priority processing compared to 17 to 25 months for the 189 visa
  • No occupation list, compared to the MLTSSL for the 189 visa
  • Can be over 45 years of age. If you are 55 years of age or older, you must demonstrate that you would provide an exceptional benefit to Australia
  • Only need proof of Functional English (IELTS: 4.5 each / TOEFL iBT: 32 each/ PTE: 30 each/ CAE: 147 each)- See 189 English requirements here.
  • Not required to provide a skills assessment. A skills assessment is mandatory for the 189 visa.

Even though the Global Talent visa has fewer requirements than 189 visa, there are certainly benefits of applying for a 189 visa compared to other pointed test visas – Skilled Nominated visa (subclass 190) and Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491):

  • Permanent and independent, which allows you to live and work permanently in any area of Australia
  • State or Territory’s nomination is not required
  • Evidence of sufficient funds to settle in the nominated State or Territory not required
  • Access the Medicare health care scheme
  • Opportunity to study in Australia
  • Sponsor relatives for permanent residence

Points can be claimed based on these:

Comparison Chart
Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) Global Talent Visa (subclass 858)
Expression of Interest Yes Yes
Points Tested Yes No
Skills Assessment Yes No
English Requirement Competent English Functional English or payment of 2nd VAC
Occupation List MLTSSL No
Target Sectors No Yes
Age Limit 45 55 (unless exception value to Australia)
Australian Nominator No Yes
Visa Application Charge – Main Applicant AUD$4,045 AUD$4,110
2020 – 2021 Planned Levels 6,500 15,000

Victor Organero

GradCertMigLaw (VU),

Juris Doctor – Master of Laws (current) – MARN 1796030

If you would like to discuss your Distinguished TalentGlobal Talent visa eligibility send an email to [email protected] or book a time here.

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