AUSTRALIAN IMMIGRATION DEPARTMENT RELEASES 2012-13 ANNUAL REPORT

Date 11.11.2013 The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) formerly known as the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) has recently tabled its 2012-13 annual report, detailing a busy year of activity.

DIBP secretary Martin Bowles said that the past year has been one of unprecedented change. The department has dealt with often unpredictable challenges in supporting the government to shape the country through managing permanent and temporary movements of people in and out of Australia, and in delivering settlement and citizenship programs.

To give an idea of the scope of the department’s work, Mr Bowles revealed that in the 2012-13 year alone, DIBP managed more than 33 million border movements by students, tourists and temporary migrants, as well as permanent residents and Australian citizens. Almost 4.7 million permanent and temporary visas were granted; more than 2.5 million calls were answered at its call centres.

As highlighted in the annual report, another achievement was a second successive year of growth in citizenship applications, with more than 120,000 people becoming Australian citizens at ceremonies, including a record 17,059 on Australia Day 2013 alone. Bowles said compliance with Australia’s migration system also remained high, with more than 99 percent of the 5.1 million temporary entrants during the year complying with their visa conditions.

The total outcome for the 2012–13 Migration Program was 190,000 places, which is 5,000 places higher than the 2011–12 Migration Program. This is said to be attributed largely to the implementation of the innovative, best practice skilled migration selection system, SkillSelect.

In the past year, the department launched a series of initiatives in the temporary migration visas, including Business Innovation and Investment program introduced on 1 July 2012 which aims to benefit the Australian economy by increasing the entrepreneurial and innovative talent entering Australia, and the Significant Investor visa introduced on 24 November 2012 to attract foreign investment by high net worth individuals who must invest at least $5 million in Australia.

The Temporary Work (Skilled) subclass 457 visa program, reformed from 1 July 2013, has been growing at a record rate.

‘The department has been instrumental in shaping the future of a prosperous, inclusive Australia,’ said Mr Bowles. ‘I commend the continued efforts of the staff who work tirelessly in our offices around the world.’

You can see the report here.