The Pacific Engagement Visa – Subclass 192

  • By:O'Reilly Stevens Lawyers

What is it?

This is a new permanent resident visa program for nationals of participating Pacific Island countries and Timor-Leste. The new Subclass 192 – Pacific Engagement visa commenced on the 29th of March 2024. It will provide 3,000 permanent places annually for citizens of participating Island countries and Timor-Leste and their immediate family members. The 3,000 quota is reached via a ballot selection process.

This new visa will grant Australian permanent residency to participants across the Pacific and Timor-Leste who successfully win the ballot.

Which countries are participating Pacific Island countries?

Citizens from Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu are eligible to apply for this visa.

Who is eligible for it?

Citizens fromthe participating Pacific Island countries and Timor-Leste are eligible to apply for this visa. To be eligible for the PEV, you must:

  • be randomly selected through the PEV ballot
  • be aged between 18 and 45 years;
  • hold a passport for a participating country;
  • have a formal job offer in Australia (job offer not required to enter the ballot); and
  • meet other visa requirements, including English language, character and health checks.

To participate in the visa ballot, you will need to meet the following requirements:

  • be aged between 18 and 45 years;
  • be a citizen of a participating country and
  • Pay the registration fee of $25.

Main benefits of this visa

The benefit for this is that primary visa applicants can include a spouse or de facto partner and legally dependent children in their application.

The Department of Home Affairs advises that ‘PEV holders will receive post-arrival settlement support through the:

PEV holders will have access to Medicare, government-funded school and higher education places.

Following passage of the Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (Australia’s Engagement in the Pacific) Bill 2023 in the Australian Parliament on 14 November 2023, eligible PEV holders will have immediate access to:

  • Family Tax Benefit A
  • Austudy
  • Youth Allowance (student and apprentice)
  • Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) and
  • VET Student Loans (VSL) programs.
  • PEV holders will be subject to the four-year Newly Arrived Resident Waiting period as other permanent residents. This applies to income support payments, including the Job Seeker payment.’

When will the Pacific Engagement Visa come into effect?

The Pacific Engagement Visa will come into effect on 29 March 2024. It is expected that the ballot to apply for a Pacific Engagement Visa for eligible candidates will open after 29 March 2024. That ballot opening date is subject to final discussions and arrangements between the Australian, participating Pacific Islands and Timor Leste governments.

When an applicant wins the ballot, they will be invited to apply for that Pacific Engagement visa within a specified period.

Want to learn more about the visa or need assistance with applying for the ballot? Call Susan Willie from our office at 07 4081 7206 for a free 10-minute discussion, or message us “192 VISA” for a free 10-minute WhatsApp call with you.

Posted in: Human Rights Law