Fijian workers now have the opportunity to work in Australia under the Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS).
This opportunity is a win-win for Australia and Fiji. It will help fill critical labour shortages in Australia and allow Fijians to earn an income and develop new skills, which they can use when they return home.
This comes after Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Marise Payne, signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Canberra with Fiji’s High Commissioner to Australia, His Excellency Luke Daunivalu.
In her official statement, Minister Payne said she was pleased to announce the partnership with the Fijian Government and commended them on their efforts to work with Australia for the benefit of the workers and employers in both countries.
Fiji’s access to the PLS was announced during the visit to Fiji by Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison in January 2019.
Labour mobility is a key plank of the ‘Fiji-Australia Vuvale Partnership’, announced by Prime Ministers Morrison and Bainimarama, a broad-ranging and comprehensive agreement that will pave the way for deeper security, economic and people-to-people links.
Under the PLS, Fijian workers can undertake low and semi-skilled work in rural and regional Australia for up to three years.
The scheme is open to all sectors with an initial focus on hospitality, aged care, non-seasonal agriculture, forestry and fishing.
Fiji’s entry into the PLS builds on its successful participation in Australia’s Seasonal Worker Programme.
Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade will manage the scheme in partnership with the Fijian Government’s National Employment Center.
Fiji joins eight other Pacific Island countries and Timor-Leste in the Scheme.