12 Jun 2008

Australia considering guest worker programme

8:21 am on 12 June 2008

Australia is considering introducing a an unskilled guest worker migration programme similar to New Zealand's scheme for Pacific Island workers.

The Australian federal government has flagged a possible trial of a guest workers scheme to help address labour shortages, particularly in the agricultural sector.

The Immigration Minister Chris Evans says the New Zealand scheme seems to be working well.

But he says the associated costs of such a system will be largely borne by employers, who must realise it will not be a cheap labour scheme.

The decision will go to the Australian cabinet in the next month or so.