Date: 24 July 2019
The number of people in Australia waiting for a visa decision has swelled to a size equivalent to the population of Hobart.
- The number of people in Australia on bridging visas has more than doubled in the past five years
- Experts wonder what impact this new influx of workers is having on the labour market
- Migrants appear to be taking advantage of delays to stay in Australia longer
According to the Department of Home Affairs, 229,000 people on bridging visas were in Australia in March. Hobart's population at the latest census was 222,000.
And a new report has identified the impact of this group on the labour market for the first time.
The Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) analysed the census to find this group had an unemployment rate of about 20 per cent.
That is high compared to the Australian average, but it still means four in five who were looking for work were working — equivalent to many tens of thousands in the labour force.