New labour agreement will aid citrus industry growth

Citrus Dec. 31, 2019

The new Horticulture Industry Labour Agreement will prove beneficial to citrus businesses across Australia, helping them fill labour shortages and remain competitive on a world stage, according to Citrus Australia CEO, Nathan Hancock.

The HILA will enable approved businesses to sponsor skilled and semi-skilled overseas workers from a select list of occupations to fill jobs where growers can demonstrate there are no local workers able or willing to fill them.

The HILA will become the largest and most comprehensive labour agreement in Australia following the acceptance of 31 occupations as well as important concessions to the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold (TSMIT) and the visa being uncapped.

Mr Hancock said labour shortages were becoming increasingly problematic for the expanding citrus industry, which is a significant contributor to rural and regional communities, and the national economy.

“When citrus businesses are unable to source the professional labour they need from within Australia, the HILA will enable them to find skilled people to fill positions in areas of management, specialist computing equipment, electricians, pest scouts and agronomists, amongst others,” Mr Hancock said.

“This agreement will enable us to continue producing the world’s best fruit in a highly competitive global environment.”

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