What is a Labour Agreement, and what benefits can it have for businesses seeking to employ skilled
overseas workers?


Labour Agreements are a branch of the 482/186/494 employer sponsored visa programs visa programs. They are
designed to be used when there is a skills shortage that cannot be met through the standard programs, and provide more flexibility for eligible employers through access to a greater range of occupations.

There are five different types:

  • Company Specific
  • Designated Area (DAMA)
  • Industry Specific
  • Project Agreements
  • Global Talent Employer Sponsored (GTES)

Company Specific

  • Available where another form of LA is not suitable
  • Occupation not available on normal skilled list, but is not below skill level 4 on ANZSCO
  • Need to demonstrate that the position cannot be filled through the local labour market
  • Applicant generally needs 2 years’ experience in nominated role, plus ANZSCO requirements
  • Employer should not have more than a one third of total workforce reliance on overseas workers, and have consulted with industry groups etc regarding labour shortages.

Designated Area (DAMA)

a) An agreement that covers a defined regional area, and is made between the government and a regional, state
or territory authority. It is designed to meet the specific labour market demands of a particular region.

b) Available occupations are specified for each particular agreement.

c) Currently there are 7 DAMAs in place:

  • Northern Territory;
  • Goldfieds, WA;
  • Great South Coast, ViC;
  • Adelaide City (Technology and Innovation Advancement)
  • SA Regional;
  • Orana, NSW
  • Far North Queensland

Industry Specific

These are designed to meet the needs of a specific industry. The lists of available occupations are related to
the needs of a particular industry. The following industries are currently available:

  • Dairy;
  • Fishing;
  • Meat;
  • Minister of Religion
  • On-hire;
  • Pork;
  • Restaurant (Fine Dining);
  • Advertising.
  • Horticulture

Project Agreements

  • Designed for project companies with genuine skills shortages during the construction phase of
    resource or infrastructure programs.

Global Talent Employer Sponsored (GTES)

  • Designed for employers who need highly skilled employees to fill niche postions,
    that cannot be filled by Australian workers, or through other visa pathways.
  • Employers need to show that the sponsored workers will benefit Australia through the transfer of
    skills and/or the creation of new jobs.
  • Access to additional occupations not on the standard occupation lists.
  • Available to established businesses and start ups.
  • Employment period is for up to 4 years with access to the permanent visa stream.


This news post only provides general information related to current migration matters. The information contained in this communication does not constitute specific migration advice, and should not be construed or relied on as such. Professional advice should be sought for the specifics of your situation prior to any action being taken. BD Welsh and Co disclaims any liability (including, without limitation, for any direct or indirect or consequential costs, loss or damage or loss of profits) arising from anything done or omitted to be done by any party in reliance, whether wholly or partially, on any of the information contained in this news post. Any party that relies on the information does so at its own risk. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.