Modi raises visa issue with Australian PM Turnbull | india-news | Hindustan Times
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Modi raises visa issue with Australian PM Turnbull

Prime Minister Narendra Modi raised concerns over the recent changes in Australian visa regulations for skilled professionals during a telephonic conversation with Premier Malcolm Turnbull on Tuesday.

india Updated: May 02, 2017 19:03 IST
Rahul Singh
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull during delegation level talks at Hyderabad House in New Delhi in April.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull during delegation level talks at Hyderabad House in New Delhi in April. (Sonu Mehta/HT PHOTO)

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged concerns about the “possible impact” of the recent changes in Australian visa regulations for skilled professionals during a telephonic conversation with his counterpart Malcolm Turnbull on Tuesday. Turnbull called Modi to thank him for the success of his recent visit to India.

New Delhi is examining the consequences of Australia’s decision to abolish a popular work visa used by over 95,000 foreign workers, majority of them Indians.

The visa programme, known as 457 visa, allows businesses in Australia to employ foreign workers for a period up to four years in skilled jobs where there is a shortage of Australian workers.

A government release said the two Prime Ministers agreed that officials from both sides will remain in “close touch on the issue.”

“We are an immigration nation, but the fact remains: Australian workers must have priority for Australian jobs, so we are abolishing the 457 visa, the visa that brings temporary foreign workers into our country,” Turnbull said in April.

Read more: The 457 visa ruling will impact India-Australia relations

The majority of the visa holders were from India. The nationals of the UK and China come after Indians in availing these visas.

“The government is examining consequences of the new policy in consultation with all stakeholders. This is also a matter we will be looking at in the context of Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) negotiations,” external affairs ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said in April.