15 October 2018

Director of Orana RDA Megan Dixon has welcomed the recent commencement of the Australian Government initiative the Pacific Labour Scheme which will support labour force shortages in the region.

The Pacific Scheme will see businesses in the Orana region and the rest of rural and regional Australia, who are unable to find Australian workers, sponsor people from the Pacific to fill low and semi-skilled jobs for up to three years.

Mrs Dixon said this is a great scheme that is demand driven and will help fill labour gaps in our small towns and on our farms, boosting economic activity and competitiveness in the region.

“With the myriad of new developments commencing in the Orana and despite a low unemployment rate of 3.7% in the Orana, there are positions that have not been able to be filled until now,”

“This Pacific Labour Scheme will work hand in hand with our work on our application for the Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA) and Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visa’s (subclass 187), encouraging a pathway to the Orana region for migrants,” Mrs Dixon said.

Six countries are currently participating in the scheme including; Kiribati, Nauru, Samoa, Soloman Islands, Vanuatu and Tuvalu, with the scheme set to continue expanding.

It is open to all industries with a focus on accommodation and food services industry, health care and social assistance industry and non-seasonal agriculture, forestry and fishing industries.

The scheme will also be supported by the Pacific Labour Facility which will be providing support assisting interest businesses to understand and access the scheme, connecting Australian businesses with Pacific workers, provide pastoral care to Pacific workers and administer the scheme in partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

For more information go to