New Entrepreneur Visa to boost Australia's entrepreneurship and innovation

New Entrepreneur Visa to boost Australia's entrepreneurship and innovation

The Department of Immigration & Border Protection has launched a new Entrepreneur Visa to support the country's National Innovation and Science Agenda.This new visa demonstrates the long-term intentions of the Australian Government on an overall national focus on science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

The new visa stream aims to attract talented and enterprising applicants, with financial aid from a third-party, to set up scientific and technological ventures in Australia. The visa stream will be included within the existing Business Innovation Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) and the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888).

Consistent with this goal, the government also updated the General Skilled Migration (GSM) points test to entice highly-skilled graduates in the fields of science, technology engineering, mathematics (STEM) and information and communication technology to work and live in Australia. The government will award extra points to these candidates to strengthen their pathways to Australia's permanent residency. To be eligible, candidates in the above-mentioned fields should have at least completed two full academic years of post-graduate studies at doctoral or masters (research) level, at an Australian Institution where that degree included a study for at least two academic years, and where the field of education is specified.


The following educational qualifications are nominated to be accepted under this update as outlined by Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS):

Engineering and Related Technologies:

  • Aerospace Engineering and Technology;
  • Civil Engineering;
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering and Technology;
  • Engineering and Related Technologies;
  • Geomatic Engineering; Manufacturing and Engineering Technology;
  • Maritime and Engineering Technology;
  • Mechanical and Industrial Engineering and Technology;
  • Other Engineering and Related Technologies; 
  • Process and Resources Engineering.

Natural and Physical Sciences: 

  • Biological Sciences; 
  • Chemical Sciences;
  • Earth Sciences;
  • Mathematical Sciences;
  • Natural and Physical Sciences;
  • Other Natural and Physical Sciences;
  • Physics and Astronomy.

Information technology  

  • Computer Science;
  • Information Systems;
  • Information Technology;
  • Other Information Technology.

The new Entrepreneur visa will be available in November 2016 and the enhanced visa pathway for STEM post-graduate research graduates will be introduced in December 2016. For more information, on the government plans for innovation visit

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