The Australian Agricultural Worker stream of the subclass 403 visa will provide opportunities for people to work in Australia\’s primary industries, including horticulture.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade will manage the Australian Agricultural Worker Program (AAWP), and will negotiate bilateral agreements with foreign governments for the program. Only citizens of countries that are a party to an AAWP agreement may participate in this program.
Visas will be valid for up to 4 years with multiple entries and defined annual maximum stays of 7 (Condition 8575) or 10 (Condition 8576) months in any 12 month period.
Under new Condition 8611, visa holders will be able to work for employers other than the sponsoring employer with DFAT’s permission. Permission may be granted in cases where the sponsor does not have work for the visa holder for a time and other labour shortages exist or where exploitation of workers by the sponsor has been identified.
The Australia – United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement (AUKFTA) is the first bilateral agreement that includes AAWP arrangements. Under this agreement UK Working Holiday Maker (WHM) visa holders will no longer be required to carry our specified work including agricultural work to be eligible for second and third Australian WHM visas.
More countries will be added to the AAWP once further agreements are negotiated.