Work and holiday visa talks with Greece
Tuesday, 14 August 2012
The Australian Government will begin negotiations with Greece about establishing a reciprocal work and holiday visa arrangement, the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen MP, announced today.
Mr Bowen said Australia and Greece shared a strong and rich relationship based on firm community ties.
'A work and holiday arrangement recognises the strength of these connections and will further enhance our cultural links between the two countries,' Mr Bowen said.
The arrangement would allow young Greeks and Australians aged 18 to 30 years old to enjoy an extended holiday in the guest country.
Participants would be able to stay for up to 12 months and engage in short term work and study during that time. The program would have an annual cap on visa numbers.
'Negotiating a work and holiday arrangement, which must be reciprocal and agreeable to both governments, can take time to finalise and implement,' Mr Bowen said.
'While we recognise the level of enthusiasm by both Greeks and Australians around a successful outcome, we must ensure all key stakeholders are consulted and the necessary administrative arrangements are in place.
'This is a significant step, and I would like to thank the Members of Parliament, community leaders and Greek Orthodox community organisations across the country who have spoken to me about such an arrangement.'
Argentina was the latest country to enter a reciprocal work and holiday visa arrangement with Australia, joining a number of other countries, including Bangladesh, Chile, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Thailand, Turkey and the United States.
Further information will be provided on the department's website, as developments occur.
Last update: Tuesday, 14 August 2012 at 11:44 AEST