The 2017-2018 budget announcement by treasurer Scott Morrison included details of the Skilling Australians Fund levy program that will come into effect with the new TSS temporary work visa to replace the 457 visa in March 2018 that will charge employers a new per-visa annual training charge of $1,200 or $1,800 per temporary visa holder each year, depending on the size of the company, and will charge one-time training fees of $3,000 or $5,000 for employer sponsored permanent resident visas such as the subclass 186 (ENS) and 187 (RSMS) visas.

According to the budget announcement, businesses with turnover of less than $10 million per year will be required to make an upfront payment of $1,200 per visa per year for each employee on a Temporary Skill Shortage visa and make a one-off payment of $3,000 for each employee being sponsored for a permanent Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa or a permanent Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187) visa.

The budget specifies that businesses with turnover of $10 million or more per year will be required to make an upfront payment of $1,800 per visa year for each employee on a Temporary Skill Shortage visa and make a one-off payment of $5,000 for each employee being sponsored for a permanent Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa or a permanent Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (subclass 187) visa.

The levy will replace the current training benchmark financial obligations for employers of workers on Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) visas, which are being discontinued as of March 2018, and permanent Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) Direct Entry stream visas. It is expected that current SBS sponsors of 457 visa holders will be required to continue to pay their existing training obligations under the current scheme based on a percentage of payroll expenditure through to the end of their SBS sponsorship period.