The Subclass 858 Global Talent Independent (GTI) visa is a permanent residence visa which is designed for applicants who have an internationally recognised record of exceptional and outstanding achievement in an eligible area or who have provided specialised assistance to the Australian Government in security matters.
The global talent visa program is designed to help grow Australia’s innovation and tech economies, thereby creating opportunities for Australians by transferring skills, promoting innovation, and creating jobs.
To be eligible for the Global Talent visa, applicants must meet a high standard and demonstrate an exceptional track record of professional achievement. This can include senior roles, patents, professional awards and/or international publications and memberships.
Masters and PhD students who can demonstrate their exceptional talent and international recognition across the specified target sectors are also eligible for the global talent Australian visa.
The Global Talent visa consists of the following pathways:
- The streamlined Global Talent Visa Program pathway – for applicants with skills in identified priority sectors who have submitted an Expression of Interest (EOI); and
- The Distinguished Talent pathway – for applicants working in other sectors.
In the current 2021-2022 Migration program year, there are 15,000 places available for the global talent pathway, and 200 places allocated to the distinguished talent pathway.
Which Sectors Are Prioritised Under The Global Talent Visa Program?
Applications made for the Global Talent Independent visa in relation to the below sectors (or a related sector) are prioritised:
- Agri-food and AgTech;
- Health industries;
- Defence, Advanced Manufacturing and Space;
- Circular Economy;
- Infrastructure and Tourism
- Financial Services and FinTech;
Additionally, to be prioritised, applications for the Global Talent Visa must meet one of the following:
- there is written communication from an Australian employer offering employment in Australia with an annual salary equivalent to or higher than the Fair Work high income threshold (FWHIT);
- the primary applicant’s current earnings are equal to or greater than the FWHIT; or
- the evidence provided demonstrates that the primary applicant is likely to attract a salary which is equal to or greater than the FWHIT.
Applicants who have completed one of the following degrees are encouraged to apply for the Global Talent Australian visa:
- a Doctoral degree (PhD) in the last 3 years, or are submitting their thesis in the next 6 months; or
- a Bachelor Honours degree or Masters degree in the last 3 years, and have an overall grade-point average of 80 (or above) out of 100
Students or graduates applying for the Global Talent Stream visa and who meet the above will be eligible for the highest visa processing priority if their studies were in one of the ten priority sectors and they can demonstrate a current or future annual salary equivalent to or higher than the FWHIT.
Such applicants are considered ‘highly desirable’ under the Global Talent Scheme visa program due to their skills and knowledge in sectors identified by the Australian Government as a priority for future industry growth, as well as emerging opportunities for Australia’s economy. These sectors have been recognised as priorities through the Industry Growth Centre initiative.
What Is The FWHIT?
How Is The FWHIT assessed?
The Department of Home Affairs (the Department) will assess if the FWHIT is met based on:
- current salary as evidenced in payslips or an employment contract;
- future job offers specifying remuneration; or
- recent PhD or Masters graduates in the target sectors.
Who Is Eligible For The Global Talent Independent Visa?
To qualify for visa grant, Gobal Talent Stream visa applicants must meet all the following requirements:
- have an internationally recognised record of exceptional and outstanding achievement in one of the following areas:
- a profession (a vocation requiring knowledge of some department of learning or science);
- a sport (an activity pursued for exercise or pleasure, usually requiring some degree of physical prowess);
- the arts (‘‘the theoretical or physical expression of creativity found in human cultures and societies. Major constituents of the arts include visual arts, literature, and performance arts);
- academia and research (scholarly and systematic inquiry into a subject to discover facts or principles);
- still be prominent in one of the above areas;
- would be an asset to the Australian community;
- would have no difficulty in obtaining employment, or in becoming established independently, in Australia in the area;
- complete a Form 1000 (this form outlines the applicant’s record of achievement in one of the above areas as attested to by an approved individual or organisation who has a national reputation in relation to the area); and
- if the applicant is aged under 18 or is 55 years of age or older at the time of application, the evidence demonstrates that they would be of ‘exceptional benefit’ to the Australian community.
Alternatively, the Minister for Immigration (‘the Minister’), must have determined that, based on the advice of a Minister responsible for an intelligence or security agency, or the Director-General of Security, the Global Talent Australian visa applicant has provided specialised assistance to the Australian Government in security matters.
In addition, to meet visa grant requirements, if at the time of application, the applicant either:
- holds a Subclass 491 (Skilled Work Regional (Provisional)) visa or a Subclass 494 (Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional)) visa; or
- if the last substantive visa held by the applicant was a Subclass 491 or Subclass 494 visa;
the applicant must have held that visa for a period of at least 3 years at the time of application.
Health and character requirements also apply.
Let us now take a look at some of the above requirements in more detail.
How Do You Demonstrate An Internationally Recognised Record Of Exceptional And Outstanding Achievement?
According to Immigration policy, an ‘internationally recognised record of exceptional and outstanding achievement’ requires that the applicant’s achievements have been, or would be, acclaimed as exceptional and outstanding in any country.
An achievement that may attract national acclaim would be considered ‘internationally recognised’ if that achievement is in an area practised in other countries and has, or would attract, similar acclaim in those countries.
The following factors will be considered by the Department in assessing the international standing of the applicant:
- the international standing of the country/countries where the applicant’s achievements were realised, in relation to the particular area;
- the standing of the achievement in relation to Australian standards (e.g. Australian tertiary education quality standards) in relation to achievements in the area of academia and research; and
- the standing of the achievement in relation to international standards.
Exceptional And Outstanding Achievement
Exceptional and outstanding achievement means accomplishing something extraordinary that places the individual above the average. Individuals with an internationally recognised record of exceptional and outstanding achievement are usually regarded as leaders in their field.
Factors to be considered by the Department in assessing the applicant’s record of achievement include:
- information provided by an accepted nominator who has a national reputation in relation to the applicant’s area of claimed achievement. This can include a full account of the reasons why the nominator believes the applicant has an exceptional and outstanding record of achievement;
- supporting statements and material provided by the applicant specifying relevant aspects of their record of achievement (e.g. their qualifications, awards, and professional or academic positions held). This should include information relating to achievements both in Australia and overseas;
- supporting statements from internationally recognised individuals or organisations in the applicant’s claimed area of achievement who are qualified to comment on the applicant’s achievements and the applicant’s reputation in the area; and
- awards received from internationally recognised institutions or organisations.
Exceptional And Outstanding Achievement And International Recognition For Certain Graduates/Students
The Department will consider the achievements of a PhD student/graduate, Masters degree or Bachelor Honours degree graduate to be internationally recognised if:
- their research is of international interest and significance;
- their research would be relevant to an international audience;
- they have presented their research at international forums;
- their research could be used to inform academia, governments and industry abroad; or
- their research is relevant to Australian academia, governments and industry in respect to advancing Australia’s international competitiveness; or
- their research highlights the potential for innovation and productivity increases for Australian organisations and industries operating in an international or globalised context.
In addition, they must have achieved a grade-point average of 80 (or above) out of 100, if they are a Masters degree or Bachelor Honours degree graduate.
What Is Required To Be ‘Prominent’ In An Area?
Applicants are expected to be currently ‘active’ in their field/area of expertise.
The below information/documentation may be used to demonstrate that this requirement is satisfied:
- details of recently completed projects;
- details of recent publications;
- details of current and recently held senior positions in a sizable business or organisation;
- evidence of delivering a presentation at professional forums, conferences and events;
- reference letter from a university or employer;
- evidence of patents, trademarks, copyrights, and other intellectual property held;
- evidence of recent national and international awards;
- evidence of membership of prominent international bodies, professional associations and current registrations/ licences.
For Bachelor Honours degree or Masters degree graduates, policy specifies that they would meet this requirement if they have completed their studies in the last three years.
PhD students must also have completed their studies in the last three years or demonstrate that they will submit their thesis within the next six months to satisfy the requirement to still be ‘prominent in their area of academia and research at the time of application. A full academic transcript and letter from the applicant’s university must be provided detailing the submission date of their thesis.
What Does It Mean To Be An Asset To The Australian Community?
Under immigration policy, an applicant would be considered an asset if their settling in Australia will be ‘useful’ to and benefit the Australian public, not limited to the applicant and/or nominator, a prospective employer or the applicant’s local community.
This does not only refer to an economic benefit; it can also be social and/or a cultural benefit to the Australian community.
An applicant would be considered to be an asset to the Australian community if they:
- raise Australia’s technical and/or academic standards internationally;
- will introduce and/or transfer skills to Australia;
- will elevate Australia’s competitiveness and reputation in sports and the arts; or
- will make a significant positive social or cultural impact on the Australian community.
The following information/documentation may be provided by the applicant to demonstrate that they meet this requirement:
- evidence that they have created a product/ technological advancement that is unique, and cutting edge in nature;
- evidence demonstrating that the applicant’s research fills a significant knowledge gap and will be of benefit to industry, business or academia in Australia; or
- evidence of their involvement in establishing a start-up company.
How Can You Demonstrate That You Would Have No Difficulty To Obtain Employment, Or Become Independently Established In Australia?
This requirement is designed to ensure that the applicant will be economically independent in Australia, either through their employment, or by becoming independently established in their area of talent, and would not therefore be reliant on social welfare.
Both the ability to obtain employment or become independently established must be in the applicant’s area of achievement and take place in Australia.
The following factors will be considered by the Department in assessing if this requirement is satisfied by the applicant:
- employment contracts or offers of employment related to the area of achievement for work in Australia. This may be evidenced by current and future employment opportunities from employers, employment/recruitment agencies, universities or organisations involved with the area of achievement in Australia;
- evidence of self-employment or opportunities to establish a viable business within the area of achievement;
- evidence of sponsorships, scholarships, grants or other payments intended to support the applicant while they are engaged in activities related to the area of achievement;
- evidence of academic qualifications in their area of achievement. E.g. PhD or Masters degree;
- evidence of high scores (overall grade-point average of 80 out of 100) during the completion of their Masters degree or Bachelor Honours degree, or
- demonstrated track records of previous employment in their area of achievement.
What Are The Nomination Requirements?
The applicant must be nominated by an eligible individual or organisation with a national reputation in the applicant’s field. The nominator must endorse the applicant’s achievements and international standing. They are not required to provide the applicant with employment in Australia.
As noted above, an applicant for a Global Talent Independent Visa must submit a completed approved Form 1000 (Nomination for Distinguished Talent). This form outlines the applicant’s record of achievement, which is to be endorsed by a nominator who has a national reputation in relation to the area of achievement.
The nominator must be either:
- an Australian citizen;
- an Australian permanent resident;
- an eligible New Zealand citizen; or
- an Australian organisation.
‘National Reputation’ for this purpose generally refers to an image or opinion which is held by the Australian public about an individual or an organisation.
Factors to be considered to determine the nominator’s reputation in this regards may include their:
- solid track record of achievements;
- evidence of high calibre;
- leadership in the relevant field of expertise;
- professional associations with lead organisations and industry bodies;
- current and previous employment history;
- participation at conferences both in Australia and internationally; and
- contribution to a number of international journals which would be used by researchers, academics and organisations undertaking work in the same field of research.
What Is Meant By ‘Exceptional Benefit’ Where Applicants Are Aged Under 18 Or 55 And Over?
Under immigration policy, exceptional benefit to the Australian community refers to a contribution that would elevate the international standing of the particular area in Australia. The applicant also needs to demonstrate that this benefit would be immediately realised and ongoing in the future.
Where Must The Applicant Be Located To Be Granted A GTI Visa?
To be granted a global talent scheme visa, the applicant may be in or outside Australia. If the applicant is outside Australia when the visa is granted, they must make their first entry to the country before the date specified by the Minister.
Once granted, the global talent visa permits the holder to travel to and enter Australia for a period of 5 years from the date of grant.
Can Family Members Also Qualify For the Global Talent Visa?
Yes, eligible members of the applicant’s family unit may also qualify for the global talent independent visa as secondary applicants, provided they meet specified requirements, including health and character criteria.
They can apply for the Global Talent Visa by making a combined application with the primary visa applicant. They can also be added to the application at any time before a decision is made by the Department.
How Can You Apply For A Global Talent Independent Visa?
To apply for the Global Talent Visa Program pathway, applicants must first submit an EOI via the Global Talent contact form. This is not a visa application but is a way for applicants to express their interest in applying for the GTI visa.
If the EOI is successful, the applicant must then lodge an application for the Subclass 858 GTI visa via ImmiAccount.
If applying under the Distinguished Talent pathway, no EOI is required. The applicant may lodge a visa application as a first step.
To lodge a valid application for the Global Talent visa, the applicant may be in or outside Australia.
If the applicant is in Australia, they must hold one of the following visas:
- a substantive visa;
- a Subclass 010 Bridging A visa (BVA);
- a Subclass 020 Bridging B visa (BVB); or
- a Subclass 030 Bridging C visa (BVC).
A substantive visa is any visa excluding a bridging visa, criminal justice or enforcement visa.
A bridging visa is a temporary visa which allows you to lawfully remain in Australia whilst your immigration status is decided.
Get More Information
If you are interested in the Global Talent Employer Sponsored programme (GTES), which enables employers to sponsor overseas workers for highly-skilled niche positions that cannot be filled by Australian workers through other standard visa programs, please refer to our Global Talent Employer Sponsored Pilot Programme is now permanent article.
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Australian Government – Department of Home Affairs – Immigration and Citizenship – Migration program planning levels
Fair Work Commission – Hearings & decisions – Unfair dismissals benchbook – An overview of legal procedure & case law – High income threshold
Australian Government – Fair Work Ombudsman – Award & agreement free wages & conditions – High income employees
Australian Government – Department of Home Affairs – Immigration and Citizenship – Global Talent contact form
Australian Government – Department of Home Affairs – Immigration and Citizenship – Applying online or paper – Applying online in ImmiAccount
Form 1000 ‘Nomination for Distinguished Talent’