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Wednesday 05th September, Issue # 80

Welcome to the September 2018 Pomsinoz Newsletter

imageA warm welcome to everyone who's registered on the forum since our last newsletter. If you've only recently joined www.pominoz.com and haven't made a post yet, then why not stop by and say hello.
This month, we've got a bumper issue, with lots of visa news to cover.
All the Best, Robert - Admin

Government considers mandatory 5 year regional settlement

The Govt is to consider a plan that would require some new immigrants to settle for up to 5 years outside Sydney or Melbourne, as part of a yet-to-be-released landmark population policy to ease congestion in the two largest capital cities.

A time period for mandatory regional settlement as part of a new migration program had been due to go to the Turnbull cabinet. It has yet to be put to the new cabinet under Scott Morrison.

Two government sources have confirmed that a period of regional settlement, of up to five years, was a key plank of the population package put before the government.

It came with a requirement to locate in regional areas or capital cities other than Sydney or Melbourne, where the rate of migrant settlement has reached almost 90 per cent of new arrivals.

A senior government source confirmed that the regional settlement timeframe was to have been discussed by cabinet before the leadership coup that led to the resignation of Malcolm Turnbull.

Under the five-year model it is believed the new visa class would apply to certain categories of new arrivals under the skilled and family migration program but in some cases could also apply to refugees.

The five-year period is understood to be based on a threshold, after which many migrants would be likely to choose to stay in the regional location after establishing ties in the community, including through employment and children’s schooling.

The move to impose regional settlement as a condition of migrant visas has been in development since the 2016 election, in response to increasing community concerns about urban pressures and congestion as well as social ­integration.

Mr Morrison, who is a supporter of a strong migration program as a driver of economic growth, is said to have signed off on the original package as treasurer but would be likely now to seek to review the package before taking it to the new cabinet.

Discuss visas and migration on the forum

Great exchange rates with moneycorp

Are you transferring money to or from Australia? If so then get great exchange rates with moneycorp – plus, as a special offer for Poms in Oz forum members, there will be no transfer fee charges. High street banks can typically charge £10-£40 in transfer fees when making an international payment.

See the table below for an illustration on the potential savings you could make by using moneycorp.

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*based on an exchange rate comparison taken on 1st January 2018 between Lloyds, HSBC, Natwest and moneycorp. Please note that there are additional costs with the service, the high-street banks typically charge £10-£40.

Get started with moneycorp and start saving money: www.moneycorp.com/uk/campaigns/partners/pio/

Moneycorp is a reference to TTT Moneycorp Pty Limited which is registered in Australia (business number 116612858). Its principal place of business is Level 15 Exchange Tower, 2 The Esplanade, Perth WA 6000, Australia. TTT Moneycorp Pty Limited is authorised to deal in foreign exchange contracts and buy/sell quotes to retail and wholesale clients as an Authorised Representative (reference number 445555) of Rochford Capital Pty Limited (AFSL License No. 361276).

Australia's population hits 25 Million

Australia's population hit the 25 million mark last month according to projections from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), a milestone reached in record time as net migration continues to outpace births.

While we cannot know for certain who the 25 millionth person was, author and political commentator George Megalogenis said they were most likely a young, female Chinese student or skilled worker.

"The two biggest migrant groups in Australia are Chinese and Indians since the turn of the 21st century," he told The World program.

"So we're getting an extraordinary number of Chinese and Indians from two countries that are actually rising.

"Since about 2005, we're receiving more people from overseas than have been added to our population through natural increase, so more migrants than babies.

"The biggest story in the 21st century for Australia is the migration story."

Net overseas migration — the number of arrivals minus departures — currently accounts for 62 per cent of Australia's growth. Natural increase makes up 38 per cent.

"Last time that happened was in the gold rushes of the 1850s," Megalogenis said.

If you look at arrival figures, as opposed to net overseas migration, people born in China emerge as the largest group of migrants accounting for 15.8 per cent of total arrivals.

Divided by visa category, international students are the largest group of arrivals, and China is the most common country of birth for international students in Australia.

Concerns over transport infrastructure and property prices in Sydney and Melbourne have seen population growth become a political issue in both cities.

Last month, there were calls for an inquiry into population growth and further cuts to the migration intake from the Coalition's backbench, while Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said there was an "out-of-control" amount of people coming to Australia on work visas.

Megalogenis said instead of "dog whistling" on migration policy, politicians should be working to ensure the benefits of migration are shared more evenly.

"If you're running a mass migration program — and you know you're locked into it because otherwise your population would age too quickly — why don't you get a discussion going about spreading the benefits to all the other parts of Australia," he said.

Discuss visas and migration on the forum

imageObtain a UK Pension (Final Salary) Transfer Value

I would encourage anyone with a private UK Defined Benefit Pension Scheme (sometimes referred to as a final salary pension) to obtain a transfer value.

Values have been increasing steadily over the years and it is believed that they have now perhaps peaked.

We are seeing values on average standing around 25x the current annual pension benefits.

This means that if you have a UK pension and the current benefit gives you a yearly pension of £10,000 the transfer value could be £250,000.

So if you are a deferred member of a Defined Benefit (final salary) UK Pension Scheme and live in Australia we strongly believe that you should be proactive in this area and we (Vista Financial Services) can request the relevant transfer values and information for you.

We can then if required provide advice around whether these benefits are best placed where they are OR whether they are going to work better for you in retirement elsewhere we can then if appropriate carry out a transfer for you.

Our solutions include being able to transfer to an Australian Super Fund (QROPS) where applicable which is a solution only open to people above age 55 currently (due to HMRC legislation).

We are also able to provide advice on transferring into an International SIPP (perhaps as an interim measure if under age 55 until it can be transferred to an Australia Super Fund) where the money can be appropriately invested as advised by us into UK and Australian currency dominated investments (I will expand more on this solution in another post).

Please note that government pensions such a NHS and Police Pension cannot be transferred neither can the UK State Pension.

Andrew Williams
Financial Adviser (FPA Member AFP ®) Specialising in UK Expat Advice and Pension Transfers / AR-322874 /AFSL-234951
Accredited Mortgage Adviser (MFAA Member)
Director - Vista Financial Services – https://vistafs.com.au/ 08 8381 7177
Vista Financial Knowledge Centre: www.vista.financialknowledgecentre.com.au

Please note that my advice is general advice only and professional financial advice should be sought for your own personal situation.

Wesfarmers CEO says migration decline would be very bad news

Wesfarmers chief executive Rob Scott has warned a decline in migration levels would be “very bad news” for the Australian economy leading to fewer jobs and lower wages.

Acknowledging there is currently a “backlash” running through the community over immigration levels, Mr Scott, who as the boss of Wesfarmers runs Australia’s biggest non-food retailer, said this type of backlash often occurred because governments had failed to invest in infrastructure such as housing and public services.

As debate around the nation grows over the levels of migration Australia should target and any flow on affect to the economy, housing prices and congestion in our key cities, Mr Scott strongly defended Australia’s long history of migration levels and the benefits had to the domestic economy.

“Australia has benefited from having the highest population growth of OECD nations for some time. That is, currently around 1.6 per cent v the average of 0.6 per cent,’’ Mr Scott said.

He said it was a leading factor in Australia’s extended period of uninterrupted economic growth.

“Migration has contributed to a reasonable proportion of this growth and also provided access to new skills and capabilities, additional spending and it has also contributed to the multi-cultural and diverse society that we enjoy.

“This is also one of the key factors that has led to Australia having sustained economic growth over the last 27 years.”

Mr Scott warned that a drop off in migration rates would damage that momentum and growth of the national economy and spill over to rising unemployment and a worsening standard of living, labelling any moves “bad news”.

“If this trend was to decline, this would be very bad news for Australia’s economic growth and ultimately mean fewer jobs, lower wages and being less competitive as a nation.”

However, he did concede there was a growing backlash against high migration levels, but this could be smoothed by more investment in key infrastructure projects.

“Population growth, and related to this immigration, can be a sensitive subjects. Backlash often occurs in major cities that haven’t invested enough in infrastructure, housing and public services and where bottlenecks exist. This is one of the reasons why I believe infrastructure investment is so critical for our nation – both in regional areas and our major cities.”

Discuss visas and migration on the forum

imageDogtainers Pet Travel Tips

We all know that moving is a stressful time in life, especially when it’s internationally. It’s up there in the top 5 most stressful things one can do in life, so it’s no surprise when moving with your furry family member, the stress levels can hit an all-time high. So we at Dogtainers wanted to take a minute to help relieve some of that stress, and give you some helpful tips and answer some frequently asked questions when preparing for your move.

Pets can be very perceptive, they almost seem to know what we are thinking sometimes, so in the lead up to a move, it’s important to try to keep your pet as calm as possible.

Try to be as relaxed as possible when around your pet, and go about your normal daily business. As the move gets closer, there a few things you can do to ensure and your fur baby for is prepared for a safe and comfortable journey.

1) Have a Vet checkup to ensure a your pets has a clean bill of health, and make sure all your pets’ vaccinations are up to date. For overseas travel, you may be required to have a specific set of vaccinations depending on the destination country (Dogtainers Pet Transport can clarify the requirements with you).

2) Keep your pet’s vaccination history and any other relevant documentation available, and make sure it’s not somewhere likely to be packed away. Dogtainers may require these documents when booking flights, boarding kennels and applying for the relevant permits from government agencies or third parties.

3) Have a soft item with a familiar smell to place inside the crate with your pet. An old shirt, a soft toy or blanket that your pet is used to will help your pet get familiarized with the crate and will limit the distress on move day.

4) Make sure your pets is acclimatized to the travel crate prior to travel. We recommend introducing your pet to the travel crate in a positive environment, where your pet is most at ease in the household. This will help them develop a positive association with the travel crate, and overall comfort during the transport. In most cases, having the crate delivered to your residence several days before departure is included in the international service offering. You can enquire about this with your Dogtainers consultant.

Frequently asked questions

1) Should I sedate my pets before the flight?
We receive this question from many pet owners, especially those that feel their pets are more anxious than others, and the answer is a resounding no. Sedation and altitude are not a good mix. Animals can become easy dehydrated, disorientated and suffer from travel sickness. It can also make it difficult to assess your pet’s wellbeing when they arrive at their destination.
We do recommend that you do not feed your pet 6 hours prior to travel day to help avoid your pet getting travel sickness. We also recommend talking your dog for a walk or run prior to the flight to stretch their legs.

2) What size travel crate should I use when transporting my pet?
It is vitally important that the crate is a suitable size for your particular pet. This means that the crate must not be too small, or too big. A crate that is oversized can result in the animal being to unsettled if the flight is to suffer turbulence, and a crate that is too small will likely be rejected from traveling by an airline, not to mention the discomfort of your fur baby during the flight. Dogtainers are experts at travel crate sizing and can provide a full range of IATA approved travel crates. For a comprehensive guide on choosing the correct travel crate, visit www.dogtainers.com.au/crate-info/

3) Where do pets travel on the plane?
Pets travel in a compartment which is usually towards the rear of the aircraft. This compartment is climate controlled with the temperature usually being set at 18 degrees by the captain of that particular aircraft.

For more frequently asked questions and expert pet travel advice, contact Dogtainers Pet Transport, on 1300 13 52 52 or visit us at www.dogtainers.com.au

At Dogtainers we are proud to say we are the oldest pet transport company in Australia, with 16 offices over Australia and New Zealand, and a verified customer feedback scores of 97.5%, we are Australia’s most trusted animal transport service. Just ask our customers

video link
 

New South Wales no longer the Top Performing State

If you're moving to Australia and haven't decided where to want to live yet, it may be worthwhile keeping an eye on CommSec's 'State of the States' reports.

The quarterly report attempts to find out how Australia’s states and territories are performing by analysing eight key indicators:

economic growth
retail spending
equipment investment
unemployment
construction work done
population growth
housing finance
dwelling commencements.

Just as the Reserve Bank uses long-term averages to determine the level of “normal” interest rates; CommSec do the same with the economic indicators.

Read the latest State of the States Report

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imageWhat's HOT on the forum right now?

The current hot 5 topics on the forum are:
  1. SkillSelect ENS 186 Timeline
  2. Should voting be a right or a duty?
  3. 187 Visa Processing time
  4. Citizenship Timelines
  5. Brexit Discussion
     
Click on the links above to participate and have your say

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World's most liveable cities - 3 Australian cities in the top 10

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After being named the world's most liveable city for seven consecutive years, Melbourne has finally been dethroned - slipping to number 2, with Vienna taking out the top spot this year.

The Economist Intelligence Unit's (EIU) Liveability Index ranks 140 cities each year on those topics, as well as stability, culture and environment.

Sydney was the next best Australian city finishing in fifth spot, followed by Adelaide at number ten.

Melbourne scored 98.4 out of a possible 100, achieving maximum scores for healthcare, education and infrastructure.

Elsewhere, London was the highest ranked UK city, coming in at number 48.
Forum News↓

More Articles added

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If you haven't done so already, be sure to check out our articles section at: www.pomsinoz.com/articles.html

We've been busy adding more suburb guides, real-life migration stories, salary guides and much more!

Temp Migrant numbers to fall

International student numbers are expected to decrease and fewer humanitarian visas are likely be granted next year, driving a downturn in temporary migrant numbers, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs Minister Alan Tudge said.

Figures released by the Home Affairs Department earlier this month show there has been a 5 per cent rise in the number of people holding a temporary visa in June this year compared with the same time last year.

“It’s likely the temporary migration figures will come down over the next 12 months because it’s likely student numbers will come off, that fewer temporary skilled migrants, as well as we will no longer have the peak obviously with the humanitarians with the extra numbers (who were) coming in from Syria,” Mr Tudge said.

Discuss visas and migration on the forum
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