Visa change to address chef shortage

24th June 2021 | Eativity editors

The federal government’s announcement that chefs will now be listed on the Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL) has been applauded by Australia’s restaurants, cafes and caterers as a move that will turbocharge the recovery of tens of thousands of hospitality businesses across the country who are suffering through a crippling skills crisis.

Restaurant & Catering Australia (R&CA) National President Con Castrisos and CEO Wes Lambert have jointly welcomed the announcement by Immigration Minister Alex Hawke, saying that it will help restaurants, cafes and caterers combat the crippling lack of qualified chefs available due to the impact of the COVID pandemic on migration.

Chefs from other nations don’t just bring their delicious cuisines, they also bring skills to share.

“These skilled migrants are a critical part of thousands of hospitality business across the country, keeping businesses open for longer hours and keeping more Australian workers in jobs,” Castrisos says. “They also play a critical role in training the next generation of Australian chefs in cuisines from all around the world.

“Across our country – from Port Douglas to Hobart; from Perth to Sydney and everywhere in between – restaurants, cafes and catering businesses have been crying out for greater access to skilled migrants to help them recover. This change answers that call.”

The move comes after the Joint Standing Committee on Migration’s Interim Report into Skilled Migration in Australia recommended chefs and managers be added to the PMSOL.

“R&CA had been advocating for these changes both to the Morrison government and the Joint Standing Committee,” Lambert says. “These changes will help businesses across our sector access the skills they need to grow their business and employ more Australians.”