Australia and India Strengthen Ties with the MATES Mobility Arrangement

Exploring Australia's MATES Program for Indian Professionals

Published: 30 November 2023
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Australia and India have announced the launch of the Mobility Arrangement for Talented Early-professionals Scheme (MATES), set to begin accepting applications in late 2024. MATES offers Indian university graduates and early career professionals the chance to live and work in Australia for up to two years, providing them with employment opportunities and professional experience.

This arrangement not only benefits individuals by allowing them to gain expertise in their fields but also serves Australian industries by granting access to India’s top talent. Sectors such as renewable energy, mining, engineering, information and communication technology (ICT), artificial intelligence (AI), financial technology (FinTech), and agricultural technology (AgriTech) will particularly benefit from this collaboration.

Established under the Australia-India Migration and Mobility Partnership Arrangement, MATES will start as a pilot program with 3,000 places available annually for primary applicants.

Key Details of MATES:

Eligibility: Indian nationals aged 30 or younger, proficient in English, and holding a bachelor’s degree or higher in eligible fields.

No Sponsorship Requirement: Unlike other visas, MATES does not require sponsorship by an Australian employer.

Permitted Activities: Participants can live and work in Australia for up to two years, promoting skill expansion and networking in designated sectors.

Family Inclusion: Participants can apply to bring dependents (spouses and dependent children) without affecting the annual cap.

Visa Duration and Extension: Visa holders have 12 months to enter Australia and can stay for 24 months from the date of first entry. Extension is possible if all eligibility criteria are met.

Cost: Application fees and associated costs will be disclosed soon, including fees for English language testing.

Implementation: An Implementation Protocol is in development to ensure fairness, equity, and integrity within the scheme. Currently, there is no set timeframe for the implementation of MATES.

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Australia and India are paving the way for enhanced collaboration, skill exchange, and mutual growth through this dynamic mobility arrangement.