Australia’s boating market is growing at record rates, but the industry is struggling to meet demand because of a severe boat-building skills shortage, resulting in new Australia immigration opportunities for boat builders and repairers.
The Australian boating industry produces significant number of large pleasure boats.
However boat building trades are now listed as 'Occupations in demand' to encourage overseas tradesmen to work 'down under.'
Marine Queensland General Manager, Barry Hibberd, told the Brisbane Times: 'The growth [in boat registrations] is averaging around six per cent a year, with registrations running at twice the population growth of Queensland.'
However, Mr Hibberd said the skills shortage is a major threat to the boating industry. They are trying to address the problem through training but businesses are struggling because they can't get skilled labour.
A boat builder, Steve Wake, told Perth's Sunday Times: 'It's not because the orders aren't there, it's because I can't get the people to build the boats to fill the orders. Normally, I'd have three people working with me, but now I'm struggling to keep one.'
As the British based Visa Bureau spokesman commented - This is a great opportunity for Britons with such skills who are interested in working in Australia'
Boat builders and repairers are on the Migration Occupations in Demand List (Australian MODL), entitling applicants for an Australian visa to extra points.