Occupation ceilings for the 2017-18 programme year

Occupation ceiling for the 2017-18 program year will stay on the same level as for 2016-17. The figure of 190,000 was announced by Department of Immigration and Border Protection Minister Peter Dutton on a budget day 09 May 2017.  It is not clear if new NZ stream of 189 visa will be part of 190,000 intake. If so – following The Guardian The Australian government estimates about 60,000-70,000 New Zealanders in Australia who might be eligible for 189 visa. Leaving about 130,000 for other nations. We do not know yet:

  • the exact numbers of available visas for various occupations from skilled occupations lists
  • minimum scores for most popular occupations to have a chance for an invitation
  • whether pro rata provisions will be introduced for most popular occupations straight away at the beginning of financial year.

We may need to wait for another week or two for the first round of invitations. Write below your name and email and subscribe to our newsletter – we’ll send an update to all subscribers once we’ll know these answers.

If you don’t want to subscribe – that’s fine, bookmark this page (press CTRL+D) and come back here in a week or two.

Remember that occupation ceilings do not apply to Employer Sponsored, State or Territory Nominated or Business Innovation and Investment visa subclasses. If you apply for 186, 187, 190 you don’t have to be worried about ceilings. If you don’t have enough points for 189 – you may consider checking if there is a state nominating your occupation and go ahead with 190 instead. Each state has their own list of occupations and their own rules, so unless you’ll ask Migration Agent Charles (Karol) Nowak for advice, you’ll have to check each state separately.

Occupation ceilings for the 2016-17 program year explained


Occupation ceiling 21 June 2017 round results chart
Source DIBP

In the table below you’ll see the occupation ceilings for the 2016-17 financial year for each occupation from the list of skilled occupations sorted by ANZSCO code unit group, and the number of invitations that have been issued for that financial year. Table is taken from last round of invitations. As you may notice having 60 points is not enough for some of the most popular occupations. I spoke yesterday to a nice lady who lodged EOI for Electronics Engineers 2 months ago with 65 points wondering why she did not get an invitation to apply for a visa yet. She wasn’t aware of ceiling and pro rata provisions, so she will very likely not get an invitation at all. There is a lot of different things in migration law only experienced migration agents are aware of. Do yourself a favor and book a consultation with a migration agent to make sure you are on the right path to get your visa sorted. 


ANZSCO groupOccupation DescriptionOccupation Ceiling Value 2016-2017Total Invitations issued for FY 2016-17Points required for 189
2631Computer Network Professionals1426148265
2339Other Engineering Professionals1000101865
2212Auditors, Company Secretaries and Corporate Treasurers1413141375
2334Electronics Engineers1000100070
2335Industrial, Mechanical and Production Engineers1539153975
2611ICT Business and Systems Analysts1482148270
2613Software and Applications Programmers5662566275
2633Telecommunications Engineering Professionals1000100060
2332Civil Engineering Professionals2174215060
2331Chemical and Materials Engineers100093260
2333Electrical Engineers1254109960
2539Other Medical Practitioners131589660
2341Agricultural and Forestry Scientists100023160
3122Civil Engineering Draftspersons and Technicians100016160
2321Architects and Landscape Architects139154260
2524Occupational Therapists100014960
2241Actuaries, Mathematicians and Statisticians100013260
2312Marine Transport Professionals100013060
2322Cartographers and Surveyors100012060
2512Medical Imaging Professionals100011660
3123Electrical Engineering Draftspersons and Technicians10009760
2527Speech Professionals and Audiologists10007660
2533Internal Medicine Specialists10005760
2521Chiropractors and Osteopaths10004260
2245Land Economists and Valuers10357360
3132Telecommunications Technical Specialists10003260
2349Other Natural and Physical Science Professionals10002560
1341Child Care Centre Managers10002260
3211Automotive Electricians10001260
2514Optometrists and Orthoptists10001160
3422Electrical Distribution Trades Workers1000760
2519Orthotist or Prosthetist1000560
3222Sheetmetal Trades Workers1000260
3991Boat Builders and Shipwright1000260
3233Precision Metal Trades Workers1000060
2415Special Education Teachers11262160
1342Health and Welfare Services Managers11774860
1332Engineering Managers14073760
2346Medical Laboratory Scientists160215860
3334Wall and Floor Tilers1475660
2725Social Workers178326560
2411Early Childhood (Pre-primary School) Teachers182226460
3421Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanics17012760
3311Bricklayers and Stonemasons17513460
3423Electronics Trades Workers19936560
3322Painting Trades Workers28712360
2531General Practitioners and Resident Medical officers349550260
1335​Production Managers33681560
3223Structural Steel and Welding Trades Workers44666160
1331Construction Managers528913660
3212Motor Mechanics559721560
3232Metal Fitters and Machinists66779660
2414Secondary School Teachers803264760
3312Carpenters and Joiners771814660
2544Registered Nurses16346348760

What is an occupation ceiling?

It’s nothing about painting a ceiling while working as a painter, as some of you may expect, nope.

An occupation ceiling is a limit. For every financial year Department of Immigration is setting a limit on the number of invitations they are going to issue through SkillSelect program for some professions, which might be eligible for a Skilled Visa (are listed on SOL or CSOL)

These limitations do apply to:

  • Skilled independent visas (189)
  • Skilled regional sponsored visas (489)
  • Skilled or business state or territory sponsored visas

Before you’ll lodge your EOI, better check if ceiling has been reached for particular year, otherwise you may never receive an invitation even having 100 points.

If you’re not sure if your nominated profession already hit the ceiling please do not hesitate to contact us or book a consultation.


Occupation ceilings for the 2017-18 programme year.
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