JobPass expansion to open interstate opportunities for 44,000 skilled workers

Tradie apprenticeships

Changes to the government’s JobPass scheme are set to reduce red tape for more tradies and other people in licensed occupations to work in different states and territories.

Drafted up by the federal, state and territory governments, the Automatic Mutual Recognition of Occupational Registrations (AMR) scheme (also known as JobPass) first came into effect in July 2021.

Announcing the plans for the scheme a year earlier, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said it would help “address impediments to labour mobility across jurisdictions”.

JobPass means people licensed and registered to practise some trades and occupations in one jurisdiction are automatically considered ‘registered’ in another, in an equivalent occupation.

Previously mutual recognition allowed licensed and registered tradies to practice in other states or territories, but they first had to apply for recognition, pay fees and sometimes meet additional requirements.

“A uniform scheme will make it easier and less expensive for businesses, professionals and workers to move or operate within jurisdictions and across Australia, thereby creating jobs, increasing output, competition and innovation, and resulting in lower prices for consumers and businesses,” Frydenberg added back in 2020.

The latest changes mean that from July 1, 2022, more licenses and registrations will become eligible.

They will include more occupations in the building and construction, mining, real estate and property, security, manufacturing, and automotive sectors.

It is not yet clear which specific occupations will be added to the scheme. Workers are advised to contact the relevant regulator in the state or territory they intend to work for more details.

According to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, JobPass could lead to an additional $2.4 billion in economic activity over ten years. Some 44,000 individuals are expected to take on work interstate, when they may not have considered it previously.

The JobPass scheme is currently available between New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, ACT and Northern Territory. Western Australia is on track to join the scheme by July 1, 2022.

Eligibility requirements differ slightly depending on the state or territory the individual is planning on moving to work in. You can find out more about JobPass eligibility in different states and territories here.

Individual states are also able to enforce limited requirements for those travelling to work under the scheme. These can include notifying the state regulator of their intent to practice; providing evidence they meet public protection requirements; and providing evidence they have passed and maintained a character test for working with vulnerable people.

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