There has always been a strong link between South Africa and Australia, which is just one of the reasons that Australia is one of the most popular countries for South African migrants today. It’s a country where you do not need to explain what a braai or a beer is and a country that shares our fanatic interest in rugby and cricket. Each year, a significant number of South Africans pack up their bags to Australia in search for better job prospects and living conditions.
In 2011, Australia recorded a considerably high population of South African born residents in Western Australia and Victoria, most of whom were well-educated people under the age of 45. In recent years, the number of South Africans who have left for Australia has surpassed even those migrating to the UK. Apart from the similar climate and language, South Africans tend to choose to migrate to Australia either to join family, escape crime and corruption, or to build a more secure future for their children in a stable economy with higher earning capabilities, and a well-established education and law system. The appeal of a stronger currency and lack of employment equity requirements has also been an influencing factor in driving migrants from South Africa.
Another attraction for South Africans looking to migrate to Australia is that it is one of the countries that allows for dual citizenship, meaning that South Africans could gain permanent residency in Australia and still retain their original South African citizenship.
Australia is a country built on migrants and as such, Australian government actively encourages migrants who have obtained permanent residency visas to take up Australian citizenship as a means of contributing to the community for the wider economic benefit to Australia.
There are implications of dual citizenship, however, in terms of leaving an entering the country as well as practical and legal limitations that need to be considered. It is important that South Africans who have obtained multiple citizenships to educate themselves on their rights and obligations in each country to avoid certain risks.
Applications for Australian immigration fall primarily into two visa streams consisting of a skilled visa category based on Australia’s skills gap and a family sponsorship category, which can be further divided into parent and partner visas.
If you are interested in becoming an Australian citizen one day, the first step is to find out whether you are eligible for a visa in any one of the visa categories that are available. As a registered migration agent, Migrate 2 Oz offers potential migrants a free assessment service which is backed by professional advice about living and working in Australia.