{{ propApi.closeIcon }}
Our industry
Our industry $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Housing industry insights Economics Insights Data & forecasts Tailored research and analysis Advocacy & policy Advocacy Policy priorities Position statements Submissions News and inspiration Industry news Member alerts Media releases HOUSING Online
Business support
Business support $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Become an apprentice host Hire an apprentice Why host a HIA apprentice? Apprentice partner program Builder & manufacturer program Industry insurance HIA Insurance Services Construction works insurance Home warranty insurance Tradies & tool insurance Member perks Toyota vehicles The Good Guys Commercial Fuel savings See all Planning & safety solutions Building & planning services Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS) Solutions for your business Contracts Online Advertise jobs Trusted support & guidance Contracts & compliance support Industrial relations
Resources & advice
Resources & advice $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Building it right Building codes Australian standards Getting it right on site See all Building materials & products Concrete, bricks & walls Getting products approved Use the right products for the job See all Managing your business Dealing with contracts Handling disputes Managing your employees See all Managing your safety Safety rules Working with silica See all Building your business Growing your business Maintaining your business See all Other subjects Getting approval to build Sustainable homes See all
Careers & learning
Careers & learning $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
A rewarding career Become an apprentice Apprenticeships on offer How do I apply? Frequently asked questions Study with us Find a course to suit you Qualification courses Learning on demand Professional development courses A job in the industry Get your builder's licence Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Further your career Find jobs
HIA community
HIA community $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Join HIA Sign me up How do I become a member? What's in it for me? Mates rates Get involved Become an award judge Join a committee Partner with us Our initiatives HIA Building Women GreenSmart Kitchen, bathroom and design hub Get to know us Our members Our people Our partners Support for you Charitable Foundation Mental health program
Awards & events
Awards & events $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Awards Awards program People & Business Awards GreenSmart Australian Housing Awards Awards winners Regional Award winners Australian Housing Award winners 2024 Australian Home of the Year Enter online Industry events Events in the next month Economic outlook National Conference Events calendar
HIA shop
HIA shop $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Most popular products National Construction Code Vol 1 & 2 Waterproofing wet areas AS 3740:2021 HIA Guide to Waterproofing HIA Guide to NCC Livable Housing Provisions Top categories Building codes & standards Contracts & documents Guides & manuals Safety documents Signage For your business Contracts Online Digital Australian Standards Digital Resource Library Forecasts & data
About Contact Newsroom
$vuetify.icons.faMapMarker Set my location Use the field below to update your location
Change location
{{propApi.text}} {{region}} Change location
{{propApi.successMessage}} {{region}} Change location

$vuetify.icons.faPhone1300 650 620

Skilled migrant system will never work for construction

Media release

Skilled migrant system will never work for construction

Media release
“Australia is not bringing enough skilled migrants into Australia to build 170,000 homes per year let alone the 240,000 homes that we need to be building to address the acute housing shortages being faced,” HIA Managing Director, Jocelyn Martin said today.

“The skilled migrant system needs a complete overhaul. The visa options available for construction are not working.

"Data from the Department of Home Affairs shows just 1,346 workers in construction trades have been granted temporary work visas in the nine months to March 2024.

“The shortage of skilled workers is a major impediment to the supply of housing. Labour shortages are resulting in project delays which add to the cost of construction. 

“Risks associated with labour shortages are causing businesses to shelve projects that could deliver the housing that Australia needs. 

“The residential building industry is just one part of Australia’s construction landscape. Businesses in the housing industry are competing with businesses delivering commercial buildings and infrastructure construction projects, and the  mining industry. 

“This competition has become even more fierce given the growth in government investment in projects linked to the transition to clean energy, and the long list of other infrastructure projects underway around the country. 

“Australia’s 1.2 million housing supply target can only be achieved if the capacity of the construction industry continues to grow and meet the needs of all these sectors. 

“Providing career opportunities for local workers should always be the priority, however, this alone will not see the workforce grow quickly enough. 

“The skilled migration system has a role to play in enabling businesses to source workers from overseas to supplement the local workforce and fill skills gaps when they arise. 

“The temporary work visa system was touted as a demand driven system, however, it is anything but. 

“The rebound in immigration as borders reopened included a lift in the number of construction trades workers with temporary work visas returning to Australia. However, the numbers arriving are still very small and very few are sponsored by businesses in the residential building industry. 

“If the Government is truly committed to seeing the Housing Accord target achieved more must be done to train local workers and enable industry to make better use of the skilled migration system,” concluded Ms Martin.

For more information please contact:

Jocelyn Martin

Managing Director

Joe Shanahan

Manager, Communications & Media
Latest articles
View all news $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
19 Jul
Changes to Home Warranty Insurance in ACT

In June 2022, the ACT Government announced it was conducting a review of home warranty cover arrangements to ensure the cover offered remains contemporary and fit for purpose.

18 Jul
We are moving HIA QLD relocates to Newstead

After more than 25 years at our Queensland home base located in Edmondstone Street, South Brisbane, our Queensland team is on the move.

17 Jul
Federal Government responds to CFMEU allegations

Today, Tony Burke, Federal Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations has set out the Government’s response to the reported behaviour of the construction division of the CFMEU.

17 Jul
WA, QLD, SA set for an increase in detached home building

“Sales of new homes nationally increased by 15.7 per cent in the June quarter 2024 compared to the March quarter indicating that the number of homes commencing construction is set to increase later this year,” stated HIA Economist, Maurice Tapang.