If you’re experiencing a shortage of local labour, you may be interested in hiring overseas workers. The following programs provide avenues to source unskilled or skilled staff:

  • The Pacific Australia Labour Mobility scheme
  • The Australian Agricultural Visa (under development)
  • The Pork Industry Labour Agreement
  • Skilled visas

Learn more about these programs below.

Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) Scheme

Through the PALM scheme, eligible businesses can recruit workers for seasonal jobs for up to 9 months or for longer-term roles for between one and three years in unskilled, low-skilled and semi-skilled positions.


More information on PALM

Australian Agriculture Visa

The new agriculture visa program is under development and will have a phased introduction. It will be a broad ranging, sponsored visa and will supplement the existing PALM Scheme.


More information on the Ag Visa

Pork Industry Labour Agreement

The Pork Industry Labour Agreement (PILA) lets you sponsor skilled overseas workers in senior piggery stockperson roles for periods of up to four years or five years depending on the visa and/or permanent residence.

The Agreement with government sets out the requirements you and your potential employees will need to meet. The main requirements are:

  • Overseas workers must hold at least an AQF Certificate III in Pork Production or equivalent qualifications and three years’ recent and relevant work experience, or at least five years’ experience in the pig industry
  • Overseas workers will be provided with the same terms and conditions as those that are, or would be, provided to Australian workers doing the same work. Earnings must be at least the market salary rate or the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT), whichever is the greater
  • That the employer meets labour market testing requirements
  • That overseas workers may be nominated for a permanent visa if they have held the occupation of Senior Stockperson (Piggery) for a minimum period of three years on a temporary or provisional visa

Concessions for some criteria can be accessed by regional businesses and these are specified in the current PILA template.

For further information on the PILA, see:

Skilled visas

Standard skilled visas are available to individuals who are qualified to work in an eligible skilled occupation in Australia and can meet other requirements. The occupation must be on the government’s skilled occupation list.

Currently this list includes the skilled occupation of Pig Farmer, which requires a level of skill commensurate with a bachelor degree or higher. At least five years of relevant experience may substitute for the formal qualification.


More information on skilled visas