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May 2016
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Welcome to the May 2016
Poms in Oz Newsletter
 
imageA warm welcome to everyone who's registered on the forum since our last newsletter, we hope you enjoy being part of our community. If you've only recently joined Pominoz.com and haven't made a post yet, then why not stop by and say hello in the 'Welcome' area.  (Remember, certain forum features and facilities don't become available until members have made a post on the forum).

All the best
Robert
Admin
 
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EU Referendum live chat with moneycorp
moneycorp logo

EU Referendum live chat with moneycorp

John Kinghorn, from the foreign exchange expert's moneycorp, is hosting a special EU Referendum live chat session with forum members on Tuesday 10th May (7:30pm until 9:30pm, UK time).

Back in February this year, UK Prime Minister David Cameron announced a referendum on whether Britain should remain in the European Union to be held on Thursday 23 June. The vote has been described as one of the "crucial votes of our lifetime".

Therefore, due to the potential movements in the exchange rate before and after the referendum, the result is an important factor to consider if you are transferring money to or from Australia.

About John from moneycorp

John Kinghorn is Head of UK Private Partnerships at moneycorp. With over 11 years’ experience in the migration industry, John regularly speaks at seminars across the UK and can also help you with other aspects of your move to Australia.

When transferring money to or from Australia, moneycorp can typically offer you better exchange rates than your bank – often up to 4% better, saving you money. As an exclusive offer for Poms in Oz forum members, all transfer fees are free when sending money overseas.

Visit the Poms in Oz currency homepage for more information - http://moneytransfer.pomsinoz.com/

How do I participate in the chat session?

If you have an account on Pomsinoz, to participate, login, then click on the 'chat' menu option at the top of the page. Clicking on chat will launch the chat software. Once the chat software has loaded, enter the moneycorp chatroom.

If you don't have an account of Pomsinoz, you can still participate by by following this link - Chat with Industry Experts. Once the chat software has loaded, tick the 'Guest' option at the top of the chat window, then choose a username and click 'Login' and enter the moneycorp chatroom.

NB: If you have a device which doesn't use Flash eg: iPhone or iPad, you can join us in the chatrooms via this link or by downloading the free 123Flashchat app from the Apps Store via this link and entering 921 as the chat ID..

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State of the States
The economic weakness linked to the end of the mining construction boom continues to weigh on Australia's resource-rich states, but both New South Wales and Victoria remain strong, according to CommSec's latest quarterly State of the States report.

The report analysed eight key indicators including economic growth, retail spending, equipment investment, unemployment, construction work done, population growth, housing finance and dwelling commencements.

NSW remained the country's best performing economy during the latest quarter, but Victoria edged closer to the top spot.

Both states maintained a strong lead over the other states and territories.

NSW boasted the best scores on population growth, retail trade, dwelling starts and unemployment, but drifted to second place on the housing finance indicator.

CommSec economist Savanth Sebastian said Victoria had very strong housing finance, retail spending, population growth and unemployment figures and was becoming a real threat to its northern neighbour.

"It's very likely that Victoria will edge even closer to New South Wales," he said.

"Maybe in six to nine months' time, if the trend and the momentum continues, Victoria may surpass the New South Wales economy."

The ACT was ranked the third-best economy, while the Northern Territory held onto fourth place.

The report revealed there was now not a great deal of room between the Top End and the fifth-placed Queensland economy.

WA drops as mining construction boom ends

Western Australia dropped from equal fifth with Queensland into sixth place.

Tasmania moved up the rankings from the worst performing economy, to be equal seventh with South Australia.

Mr Sebastian said the WA economy had undergone a huge turnaround, and there was now very little to separate the bottom three economies

"Over the past couple of quarters, the Western Australian economy has continued to shift down in terms of the rankings," he said.

"I think those concerns around the mining boom — the construction phase coming to an end — it's creating a bit more concern around unemployment and in particular, with population growth slowing as well."

The Northern Territory scored very highly on economic growth and construction work, but momentum in its economy is petering out.

The Top End is now ranked last on population growth, business investment and housing finance.

Signs positive for Queensland, South Australia


Mr Sebastian said Queensland had been languishing around the middle of the economic ladder for some time, but the low Australian dollar was likely to provide a boost.

"Tourism is going to be a big driver for the state, exports of agriculture will be supportive and also the education sector from international students," he said.

"So we should see over the next couple of years that the Queensland economy continues to strengthen. But it is a very big economy in terms of the size of the state, and it takes a while for that ripple effect to feed through."

Mr Sebastian said there were also some encouraging signs for the beleaguered South Australian economy.

"The defence deal for submarines — that may actually provide a bit of a boost for the South Australian economy," he said.

"It used to be a big education hub the last time the dollar was down at these sort of levels, and now that the dollar is back in the 70s rather than at parity with the US dollar, I think over the next year or two, you will see that international education will be a driver of the growth story for South Australia."

He added that Tasmania was beginning to pick up some much-needed momentum and there were some healthy indications in that state's labour market.

"There is a modest lift in momentum taking place and I think, a healthy pick up in terms of retail, and keep in mind, it's fourth ranked when it comes to unemployment as well."

CommSec State of the States rankings

1.New South Wales
2.Victoria
3.Australian Capital Territory
4.Northern Territory
5.Queensland
6.Western Australia
7.Tasmania, South Australia (equal)

Discuss migration and visas
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Can you help us?
  • If you enjoy participating on the forum, then if you have a facebook or Google account, we've be extremely appreciative if you could click on the facebook 'like' button or the Google '+1' button at the top of the homepage and help publicise the forum and grow our community.
  • The strength of a forum is in it's membership and the knowledge and experience that the collective membership possess. With this in mind, I'd like encourage all members to contribute as much as possible on the forum. One of the ways you can do this is through browsing the 'Unanswered threads' to see which members are waiting for an answer to a particular query. To view threads without a reply, from the homepage, click the 'Unanswered Threads' option in the menubar towards the top of the page.
  • If you're a website owner and promote your site on the forum through the use of a signature, then consider placing a link back to us. The bigger we grow, the more traffic will flow on to your own website from us.
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Need a pet transport specialist located in Australia…

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Dogtainers are Australia’s oldest and most experienced pet relocation company, established since 1971.

Dogtainers Pet Transport have 14 Offices in Australia & New Zealand including Melbourne where we service the quarantine station on a daily basis with industry best rates.

We offer trusted and reliable pet relocation solutions for domestic travel throughout Australia plus International transport back to the UK and all other parts of the world.

Animal welfare is Dogtainers number one priority. We understand that the thought of moving your four legged family member can make any pet owner anxious. Dogtainers looks to ensure that you are comfortable and reassured at each stage of the process. For international travellers we are pleased to offer our “International Pet’s Fly Guarantee”. Confident that Dogtainers does provide the best service in our industry we introduced our International Pet Fly Free Guarantee to ensure that in the lead up to an international pet relocation that you, the pet owner and the pet had the best possible experience and felt reassured that the arrangements are being made in an organised and timely fashion. As the title suggests if we don’t live up to our side of the deal your pet will fly for free. Read more at https://www.dogtainers.com.au/pets-fly-free-guarantee/

Every time you deal with Dogtainers you will be dealing with a pet travel specialist. Why is this important? Our experienced pet travel specialists offer advice on all matters involving the movement of your pet. They can provide information relating to why sedating pets for travel is not recommended, the appropriate crate size for your pet , how to best acclimatise your pet to the travel crate ( for international moves we bring the travel crate to your home in metro cities in advance of the move so your pet can become used to the crate environment ) , specialist routing information for domestic and international sectors , possible boarding requirements , government regulations and more .

We love pets , we love what we do and we arrange pet travel for over 45,000 Dogs, Cats and other household pets every year. We look forward to helping your pet reach their new home.

Please do not hesitate to contact us at Australia@dogtainers.com.au, call our Toll free number 1300 13 52 52 or send us a message through the Poms In OZ forum

www.dogtainers.com.au
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Thousands of overseas students in extreme financial hardship in Australia
 An estimated one in four overseas students studying in Australia is facing financial hardship, according to an academic.

For thousands of international students living in Australia, extreme financial hardship leaves them struggling to afford a decent meal, the expert says.

Associate Professor Sophie Arkoudis from the University of Melbourne has studied higher education and the role of international students in Australia.

"Australia, in the last 10 years, has been very successful in the international student market, so successful that it is our third largest export industry," she said.

Professor Arkoudis said there tended to be a lack of empathy because many assumed international students were well off.

"We need to break down some of barriers that exist within society about common held assumptions and generalisations about these students," she said.

Her studies in the area show that almost a quarter of all international students studying in Australia are experiencing extreme financial hardship.

A food truck for the homeless now making a weekly stop at the University of Tasmania is being used by some students.

University of Tasmania student EJ Yeoh from Malaysia agreed many overseas students faced financial hardships in Australia.

"[It's a] huge shock, because I'm from Penang Malaysia, which we have street food and we just have food everywhere and super cheap, and coming here everything is just expensive," she said.

When she arrived in Tasmania, EJ said she relied on support from her parents for six months to help cover food and rent costs.

She said many students did not have the financial means for further support and felt a sense of shame if they spoke up.

"Some of my friends will have days where they'll just eat one or two meals, just because they want to save money for other things like rent," she said.

"They don't want people to look down on them or their families and see them as a lesser of a student or human being compared to other people who live comfortable lives."

The chair of the Multicultural Council of Tasmania, Alphonse Mulumba, said he had dealt with many students facing financial problems.

He said the common assumption that international students were rich could not be further from the truth for the students he had helped.

"That assumption that all international students are rich or are better off because they can afford the school fees is completely wrong," he said.

"We have people who have people whose parents have saved for years for them to make sure their child has a better education."
No extra government assistance

The Federal Government has ruled out offering further assistance to overseas students.

The Minister for International Education, Senator Richard Colbeck, said there would be no concessions offered.

"Part of the visa application process is that they demonstrate that they have the capacity to look after themselves when they are here in Australia," Senator Colbeck said.

"We have some very generous work rights here in this country where students can work for up to 20 hours a week."

The University of Tasmania has declined to comment.

Discuss migration and visas
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Migration to Australia made easy
imageMoving to Australia is a big step but one made easier by a new insurance product that will help skilled migrants overcome some of the common obstacles.

BMigrating to Australia is a dream for many Brits, but the process can be long and testing for individuals and families alike. Although the benefits of life in Australia are obvious, the risks associated with moving to a new country can put off some hopefuls.

The thought of starting a new life in a country thousands of miles away from more familiar surroundings is enough to make them think twice. Furthermore, the costs involved in shipping, transporting and setting up a life in Australia can be extremely high which can limit who, in reality, is able to immigrate.

Questions constantly plague the migrant’s mind, such as; What will happen if a family member at home becomes ill? What will happen if I am involuntarily made redundant? How will I return home if I need to?

However, thousands of people each year do make the trip to Australia, and manage to secure a permanent visa. They know the pressure to go home may come one day, and the loss of a job or serious illness can very quickly change their circumstances.

Ex-Pats in Australia also appreciate that if they have to come back to their country of embarkation, the expense will be theirs and theirs alone. They know only too well about the costs they paid out to move to Australia, so the thought of doing it all again in a short space of time, with little funds, is a burden that they always carry with them.

This is also a significant issue for employers, who face losing their newly hired staff for issues that may be out of their control, making migrant hires a more complex and expensive process than is necessary. This is especially frustrating where talent has been brought in from another country to help develop services or products within Australia using skills that may not be easily available within the country.

Thankfully, there is a now an insurance product that can help alleviate some of that moving stress. Migration Cover offers the first comprehensive insurance product created specifically for skilled migrants. It provides a sense of security  for people immigrating, or those who have already immigrated, to Australia.

Migration Cover’s experience has shown that skilled migrants are most concerned about:

1. Leaving family behind
2. Illness or death in the family, including the migrants themselves
3. Involuntary redundancy
4. Leaving property behind

The product reduces the anxiety of immigrating by covering the policyholder’s repatriation, employment advocacy and travel needs.

Migration Cover costs less than you think, with packages to suit all budgets, whether you are single or have a family. So migrants can now ‘Go with Confidence!’™

For more information and a free quote, visit www.migrationcover.com
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Backpacker tax review continues
With the stage set for a federal election on July 2, the tourism and agriculture industries are nervously awaiting the results of a cross-departmental review into the controversial backpacker tax.

The plan to tax foreign workers 32.5 cents for every dollar they earn from July 1, raised serious concerns about labour shortages and a potential downturn in the number of visitors choosing working holidays in Australia.

It would also result in a scrapping of the $18,200 tax-free threshold for foreign workers.

Minister for Tourism, Senator Richard Colbeck, heads the cross-departmental review and said discussions with industry groups had been productive.

"One of the things that we want to do as a government is to ensure that we maintain a strong flow of visitors to the country," Senator Colbeck said.

"Obviously they make a contribution by the fact that they're here as tourists — they also assist particularly in regional areas, in tourism and in agriculture.

"We want to make sure that both those sectors maintain the workforce capacity that they do and the assistance they provide in that space as well.

"We also need to be cognisant of the fact that we want to have available jobs for Australians, so all of those things have been part of our discussions," Senator Colbeck said.

"We're now working through the government processes to finalise what we might be able to do."
Shortage of local employees, farmer says

Industry leaders questioned the Treasury Department's forecast that the backpacker tax would generate $540 million over the next three years.

Chris Fullerton from 'Fullerton Farms' at Elimbah on the Sunshine Coast said the damaging effects of the proposed backpacker tax on the pineapple industry should not be underestimated.

Half of the pickers and packers employed for his family farm's harvest were casual labourers and international backpackers provided up to 90 per cent of that casual work force.

"The potential that that backpacker tax has on us being unable to source labour has huge impacts," Mr Fullerton said.

"Of course, like most other businesses we'd love to employ the locals for our casual labour source, or for all our labour needs, but the fact of the matter is we just can't get them.

"There's a lot of local employment agencies that continually contact us and are willing to supply us with labour, but generally they might turn up, they might work half a day and then we don't see them again or they don't even bother turning up for the job interview," said Mr Fullerton, who is also the chairman of the board of Tropical Pines.

"With the backpackers they are more than willing to work, they have a clear goal that they want to achieve.

"We pay them exactly the same, they get all the same entitlements that any of the locals would do, so that's why we desperately need them. We don't need any deterrents," Mr Fullerton said.

Backpacker Guillame Coulon was a physical education teacher in France and said his working holiday in Australia would not be worth it if he lost a third of his wages in tax.

"I think nobody want to come," Mr Coulon said.

"Just one good point is learn English, but without that I make more money in Europe than here, so what is the best for me?"

Senator Colbeck would not be pressed on when he would release the results of the view.

"We are going through internal government processes right now and I think I've said before I'd like to get my answer out the door as quickly as possible and I haven't changed my view on that," he said.

Discuss backpacking and Working Holiday Visas
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Newly opened $3.6m Riverland backpackers resort 'will be full' during citrus season
The developer of a new 236-bed backpacker resort in the Riverland expects the $3.6 million facility to be full during the upcoming fruit picking season.

"I believe through the orange season coming up we will be full. Predominantly this is the busy period, we expect to be busy from now until the end of November," Rockford Homes Riverland builder John Pearce said.

The Paringa development attracted $1.2 million in Federal Government funding and has been purpose-built to accommodate backpackers to provide seasonal labour to Riverland farms.

It was officially opened on Wednesday by South Australian Regional Development Minister Geoff Brock.

Mr Brock praised Renmark Paringa Council for working to rezone the site, which was originally gifted to council by an early settler, and said the development would stimulate the Riverland economy.

"This will be a great boost for local jobs here, if people can stay in the region then they will spend in the region," Mr Brock said.

A lack of suitable accommodation for backpackers has been flagged by job agencies as an ongoing issue in meeting farm labour demands in the Riverland. 

'Setting the bar' to impress backpackers

The facility is the brainchild of Renmark builders John and Leeane Pearce and will have four full-time staff.

"We have managers on site, they are experienced in this kind of accommodation, we will be in the background making sure everything goes alright," Mr Pearce said.

The resort has 28 cabins, a swimming pool, barbecue areas, gym, recreation lounge and staff training centre.

"It's something anybody can use, but predominantly it's here to support the workforce to pick the oranges, that's what it is designed for," Mr Pearce said.

"We just tried to do the best we can to impress the backpackers, that there is some good accommodation here for workers, it's just trying to set the bar.

The first guests at the resort will be working-visa holders from Taiwan.

"They are certainly a part of the workforce that is going to be involved in some of the packing sheds here and involved in the upcoming season, that's just one of the groups coming through," Mr Pearce said.

The influx in seasonal workers staying in Paringa would provide a boost to nearby retailers.

"It's ideal, the location is fantastic, it's at the town so if they haven't got transport they can walk to the hotels and shops and the work's just up the hill, so it's perfectly located for that," Mr Pearce said.

"Hopefully we treat them as guests and give them a good memory of the Riverland."

A boost to economy as Government reviews backpacker tax

The development attracted $1.2 million from the Regional Development and Innovation program as part of the $265 million South Australian River Murray Sustainability Program (SARMS).

The program is funded by the Federal Government and delivered by Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA).

Federal Member for Barker Tony Pasin described the resort as the "equivalent of the Hilton for backpackers".

He said he had pushed for a "favourable outcome" on the proposed backpacker tax, which was under review by the Federal Government.

It could see foreigners on working holiday visas taxed 32.5 cents from the first dollar they earn and a scrapping of the $18,200 tax-free threshold.

"This is about economic stimulation for the Riverland," Mr Pasin said, adding he had left his Federal cabinet colleagues under "no misapprehension from me of the need to ensure we are at least on a level playing field with our competitors like New Zealand".

Discuss backpacking and Working Holiday Visas
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Visit our state specific forums

imageIn addition to Pomsinoz, we operate several state specific Australia migration/expat forums. Our regional forums are a great place to meet new friends and get detailed information about the area you're moving to.

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