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Visa application centres to open in Chinese cities

Visa application centres to open in Chinese cities

A new visa application facility in major Chinese cities open in order to better facilitate Chinese tourists and workers who wish to come to Australia.

The new Australian Visa Application Centres (AVACs) are being opened this month in order to improve customer service and tap into a market of potential. These centres will be opened for longer hours with phone lines open until 17:00 with internet kiosks available for people to fill in online applications.

The success of the Beijing and Shanghai Visa Application Centres will act as a litmus test for potential offices in cities such as Guangzhou and Chengdu in 2013.

An immigration spokesperson has stated that these new AVACs will not be not be a part of the decision-making process.

"All applications will continue to be assessed and decided by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship, the spokesperson said.

"Staff at the AVAC will have no involvement in the decision-making process or have any knowledge of the application outcome."

The Australian Embassy in Beijing will still be the primary entity for networking with the Chinese government.

These new centres comes as the first round selections in the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship's (DIAC) new SkillSelect program have been announced, and it's dominated by the medical profession and the economic sector.

Doctors, IT workers and accountants are among the top professions represented in the 100 invitations from the first round of offerings for new permanent immigration visas.

The small pool of candidates was part of the department's policy to ensure every facet of this new streamlined process worked smoothly.

The quality of selection was also a high priority as all candidates scored above a 75 in the skilled and family sections of the visa, pointing out the high quality of candidates that are being brought into the country. 60 points is typically the minimum points mark required for this type of visa, this new program is targeting the most highly qualified.

A DIAC spokesperson said the success of this program will have more wide ranging benefits than previous migration policies and initiatives.

"SkillSelect helps to ensure the skilled migration program is based on the economic needs of Australia.

"It supports the government in managing who can apply for skilled migration, when they can apply and in what numbers."

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