The Australian Federal government has removed the 40-hour working cap for international students in all sectors.
International students will be able to work extra hours in the sectors facing workforce shortages caused by the Omicron variant.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed changes would be made to remove the working cap for international sectors temporarily.
“The goal is not to stop everyone in the country getting COVID,” PM Morrison told reporters after the National Cabinet on Thursday.
“The goal is to protect our hospitals and keep our society and economy functioning as we ride this latest wave of Omicron.”
Home Affairs had announced students must continue to balance their study and work commitments even though there was more flexibility in work hours in specific sectors.
Students who work more than 40 hours per fortnight in the said sectors must:
- maintain their course enrolment
- ensure satisfactory course attendance, and
- ensure satisfactory course progress.
Student visa holders who cancel their enrolment and stop attending classes, or fail to meet satisfactory course progress, may be in breach of their visa conditions.
The department says that if the students are working or have an offer of employment in one of the sectors announced and have finished their course, they may be eligible for a COVID-19 Pandemic (subclass 408) visa. However, they can only apply for this visa 90 days before their student visa is due to expire.