The federal government has announced the formation of a new council to advise it on skilled migration.
The new Ministerial Advisory Council on Skilled Migration (MACSM) will provide the government with expert advice on the role of skilled migration in the Australian economy, according to the Minister for Immigration, Chris Bowen.
“Skilled migration plays a valuable role in addressing current and future skill shortages, as well as lessening the impact of Australia’s ageing population, and it’s important that we have fresh perspectives on how to best address these issues,” Mr Bowen said, in a statement released this morning.
“This new ministerial advisory council will provide the government with independent advice to help develop our migration policies and programs.”
Former vice-president of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) Michael Easson is the new council’s chair.
Paul Howes of the Australian Workers’ Union, Woolworths CEO Grant O’Brien, CFMEU national secretary Dave Noonan and Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA chief James Pearson will also sit on the council.
Peter Tighe, the national secretary of the Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union, is also a member.
Mr Tighe traveled to Ireland in April to launch a union scheme allowing Irish electricians and plumbers to have their skills assessed for Australia in Ireland.
Xstrata’s Karen Read, the ANU’s Prof Peter McDonald, Australian Industry Group chief Innes Willox and ACTU president Ged Kearney are also members.
Each state and territory will be represented by a government official nominated by its state premier or territory chief minister.