We called for policies that help drive growth in WA, such as putting Perth back on the Regional Migration Scheme (RMS) and implementing job-creating initiatives for West Australians that keep our local talent in WA.

 

The Federal Government needs to take a holistic approach to assessing key economic drivers on a national scale, so that policy reforms meet the unique requirements of each state and territory.

 

Recent changes to lending criteria, aimed at cooling the booming markets of Sydney and Melbourne have had the desired outcomes in those areas. However, those changes were applied across the country with no regards for the impact it would have on WA’s market which was just starting to recover at the time this lending criterion was implemented.

 

As a result of those changes, WA recorded its lowest level of property transactions since the 1990s in 2018 with just over 32,000* sales recorded.

 

The Federal Government has control of key levers of economic growth that directly link to the health and sustainability of local property markets.

 

The main lever is population growth. There is no doubt that the recent housing boom on the east coast was linked to their increasing population, placing a high demand on property prices.

 

According to the ABS, we were also the only state to record a negative net migration figure in 2016-17. Of the 13,384 people who came to WA in 2016-17, we lost 550 more to other states.

 

We must encourage more people to come to WA and ensure those that live here are here to stay. An increase in migrants would create jobs, improve our local housing market and make the economy stronger.

 

Election outcome

In November 2019 Perth had its regional city status reinstated which is a significant win for the state in a bid to help grow WA’s population and stimulate the economy.

 

The Policy provides special visas to international skilled workers and students who move to regional areas of Australia. It is aimed at reducing the congestion in major cities such as Melbourne and Sydney by encouraging people towards regional areas.

 

Employers in the designated regional areas who have staff shortages, will have access to a larger list of occupations to fill positions. Those that agree to work in a regional area for three years will have their visa applications elevated to the top of the list and after their visa finishes, will be eligible to apply for permanent residency.

 

From a student perspective, international graduates from a regional university will be able to work for an extra year in Australia after their studies have concluded.

 

For more information about this issue, email advocacy@reiwa.com.au

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