Modi speaks to Turnbull about changes in Australian work visa

RSTV Bureau
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull before their delegation level meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on Monday, 10 April 2017.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull before their delegation level meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on Monday, 10 April 2017.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has conveyed to Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull India’s concerns the changes in Australian work visa that is bound to affect Indians. PM Modi dialed Turnbull weeks after the country decided to abolish a popular work visa used by a majority of Indians.

“Prime Minister Modi expressed concern about the possible impact of the recent changes in Australian regulations for the skilled professionals visa programme,” the statement a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said.

The two Prime Ministers agreed that officials from both sides will remain in close touch on the issue, said the statement.

PM Modi conveyed the concerns during a phone call initiated by Turnbull, it added.

The phone call also comes just weeks after the Australian Prime Minister visited India. Turnbull also thanked Modi for the success of his recent visit to India in the phone conversation.

“The two Prime Ministers also discussed the follow-up action taken after the visit of Mr. Turnbull to India last month, and the steps required to further strengthen the bilateral relationship,” the PMO statement said.

About three weeks back, Turnbull had announced his decision to abolish the 457 visa, which allows businesses to hire foreign workers for up to four years in skilled jobs.

“We are an immigration nation, but the fact remains: Australian workers must have priority for Australian jobs, so we are abolishing the 457 visa,” Turnbull had said.

(With inputs from PTI)