Prime Minister Narendra Modi today conveyed to his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull India’s concerns about the impact of the recent decision to abolish a popular work visa used by a majority of Indians. Modi conveyed the concerns during a phone call initiated by Turnbull, a PMO statement said. “Prime Minister Modi expressed concern about the possible impact of the recent changes in Australian regulations for the skilled professionals’ visa programme,” the statement said.
The two Prime Ministers agreed that officials from both sides will remain in close touch on the issue, it added. About three weeks back, Turnbull had announced his decision to abolish the 457 visa, which allows businesses to hire foreign workers for up to four years in skilled jobs.
“We are an immigration nation, but the fact remains: Australian workers must have priority for Australian jobs, so we are abolishing the 457 visa,” he had said. A majority of those using the visa programme are Indians.
During the telephonic conversation, Turnbull thanked Modi for the success of his recent visit to India. “The two Prime Ministers also discussed the follow-up action taken after the visit of Mr. Turnbull to India last month, and the steps required to further strengthen the bilateral relationship,” the PMO statement said.