The Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL) is going to be overhauled whilst the Critical Skills List (CSL) will be phased out completely.The Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL) is going to be overhauled whilst the Critical Skills List (CSL) will be phased out completely.

The Australian Department of Immigration is near to concluding its review of the MODL. As part of their review, the department will examine and report on the role and purpose of the MODL in targeting skill needs in relation to the General Skilled Migration (GSM) program, to complement the supply of tertiary qualified Australians.

It’s hoped that the review will enable DIMIA to use the MODL as a more strategic tool ensuring that skilled migration is better aimed at responding to future skill needs which cannot be addressed through domestic training and skills development.

The arrangements for the transition to the new MODL will be determined once the outcomes of the review are finalised.

It should be noted that the changes to the MODL will not affect the ability of Australian industry to meet its skill needs through the Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) and Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS).

The Critical Skills List will also remain in place while the review is in progress.

Occupations which are listed on the CSL receive priority processing will continue until the review is finalised; however it will then be phased out following the implementation of any recommendations flowing from the review.

So far the Australian Immigration authority has issued two papers which complement these reviews; both of these papers are available via the links below:

MODL issues paper 1

MODL issues paper 2

The more recent of the two ‘issues paper’ shows that the Australian Government is considering three potential options with the Futures Skills List:

1) No Future Skills List in the GSM process
2) Future Skills List as component of GSM Points Test or
3) The Future Skills List replaces the CSL as a prioritisation mechanism.

The review also gives a limited indication of how the changes will be introduced.

“All three options for integrating a new Future Skills List with the GSM assessment process require complementary changes to the Points Test,” the second issues paper states.

“A sensible transition period would need to be established to ensure a smooth administrative implementation and to provide potential applicants with adequate notice of changes to the eligibility requirements. “ <- That’s a refreshing change!

“It would also be sensible to look to align any changes to MODL with Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s plan to transition from using Australian Standard Classification of Occupations to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification on Occupations as a basis for the Skilled Occupations List in the first half of 2010.”

Many Aussie Migration agents state that it could be assumed that all the changes to the Australian General Skilled Migration program previously anticipated will still be made, and that the Government is hoping to launch all the changes as part of one, unified overhaul to the Australian migration program in early 2010.

Either way, if your thinking about lodging your Australian visa application, I’d probably lodge it sooner rather than later.

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