The purpose of migration is to build the economy, shape society, support the labour market and reunite family.

The migration programme size and composition is flexible and changes over time, from a smaller programme with mostly family migrants in 1993-94 to a larger programme with more skilled migrants in 2013-14. Planning levels are set by the government each year and the size and composition changes to meet the social and economic needs of Australia. 

Below are some statistics from the 2014-15-Migration-Programme-Report by Department of Immigration and Border Patrol (DIBP)

The total migration programme outcome for 2014–15 was 189,097 places.

Source countries

The major source countries in the migration programme were India, China and the United Kingdom.

The largest source countries of migrants for 2014-15 were:

India with an outcome of 34,874 places (18.4 per cent of outcome), down from 39,026 places (20.5 per cent of outcome) for 2013-14;

China with 27,872 places (14.7 per cent), up from 26,776 places (14.1 per cent); and

United Kingdom with 21,078 places (11.1 per cent), down from 23,220 places (12.2 per cent).


In terms of regions:

Southern Asia (including India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives) now provides 28.9 per cent of the migration programme (a decrease from 29.7 per cent in 2013–14), largely due to a decrease of migrants from India;

Chinese Asia (including China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau and Mongolia) had an increase in its share of the programme from 15.4 per cent in 2013–14 to 16.1 per cent in 2014–15; and

United Kingdom, Channel Islands and Isle of Man has declined since 2005–06. Specifically, its share of the programme has declined from 12.2 per cent in 2013–14 to 11.1 per cent in 2014–15.

Of people migrating to Australia, 68 per cent are skilled migrants and 32 per cent are from family visa streams.

This is further broken down to:


38 per cent employer sponsored,

34 per cent skilled independent,

2 per cent state, territory and regional nominated and

6 per cent business


79 per cent partner, 14 per cent parent, 6 per cent child and 1 per cent other.

Within the overall programme the breakdown by programme stream was:

• 127,774 places delivered in the Skill stream;

• 61,085 places delivered in the Family stream; and

• 238 places delivered in the Special Eligibility stream.

Skill stream

At the major group level of the Australia New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO), the top three major occupation groups for primary visa grants in the Skill stream were Professionals (67.1 per cent), Technicians and Trades Workers (16.7 per cent) and Managers (9.0 per cent).

The Skill stream accounted for 67.6 per cent of the total 2014–15 migration programme outcomes.

Within the Skill stream:

• the Employer Sponsored category had an outcome of 48,250 places. It comprised 37.8 per cent of the 2014–15 Skill stream outcomes, with 35,870 places (74.3 per cent) granted under the Employer Nomination Scheme and 12,380 places (25.7 per cent) granted under Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme;
General Skilled Migration (GSM) had an outcome of 72,840 places. GSM comprised 57.0 per cent of the Skill stream outcomes in 2014–15. Within GSM, 82.6 per cent (29,192 places) of primary applicants had an occupation on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL)
; and

• outcomes in the Business Innovation and Investment Programme and the Distinguished Talent category were 6484 places and 200 places respectively.

The State-Specific and Regional Migration (SSRM) had an outcome of 42,183 places
(33.0 per cent of the total Skill stream outcomes). These visas are included in the various Skill stream categories discussed above.

Family stream

 The Family stream accounted for 32.3 per cent of the total 2014–15 migration programme outcomes.

Within the Family stream: • 78.3 per cent (or 47,825 places) of the outcome comprised partners (including spouses, fiancés or partners of Australian citizens, permanent residents and eligible New Zealand citizens); • the outcome for the Child category was 4135 places; • the outcome for the Other Family category was 450 places; and • the outcomes for Non-Contributory Parent and Contributory Parent categories were 1500 places and 7175 places, respectively.

Special eligibility

The Special Eligibility stream outcome of 238 places accounted for 0.1 per cent of the total 2014–15 migration programme outcomes.

States and territories

The states/territories that attracted the largest number of migrants were:

New South Wales with an outcome of 56,709 places (30.0 per cent);

• Victoria with 45,307 places (24.0 per cent); and •

Western Australia with 26,233 places (13.9 per cent).


Adventurer, Writer and Backpacker Jason is a recent migrant to Australia. He has created the Migrant Ninja Series as a platform to guide all future migrants to Australia!