Glenelg welcomes migration agreement

News Item Date: 
Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Glenelg Shire Mayor Cr Anita Rank has welcomed the Federal Government’s DAMA (Designation Area Migration Agreements) agreement for the south-west, citing it will assist the region to realise its “true economic potential”.

Member for Wannon Dan Tehan yesterday announced that the agreement would allow migrant workers to fill gaps in the agricultural sectors, initially in dairy and meat-processing. The first stage will focus on the Warrnambool market with later distribution across the wider region, including the Glenelg Shire.

The plan opens a new pathway to permanent residency, with criteria stating a migrant must stay in the region for at least three years, a measure that previously did not exist.

It will allow for a fairer distribution of migrants across regional Australia, away from congested metropolitan centres towards regional and rural areas who can readily accommodate an increase in population.

Cr Rank said the agreement “better matched the needs” of the south west region, filling an urgent shortage of jobs.

“We know there are positions ready to be filled across the south-west. Our shire has a number of these roles, particularly in the transport, agricultural, mechanical and trade sectors,” Cr Rank.

“Some businesses have had vacancies for some time and have been unable to fill these roles. This has an impact on businesses ability to expand and grow, or, meet current market demand.

“This DAMA is a pathway for change and economic growth and allow our community to prosper and realise its real potential.”

Earlier this month council welcomed potential migrants from Melbourne and Sydney on a regional excursion, showcasing opportunities in the agricultural sector as part of the Great South Coast Economic Migration Project.

Cr Rank said the shire had been working tirelessly with industry in an effort to fill the urgent skill shortage across the region.