Labour Market Deregulation and Temporary Migrant Labour Schemes: An Analysis of the 457 Visa Program

Australian Journal of Labour Law, Vol. 25, No. 3, 2013

U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 676

45 Pages Posted: 4 Mar 2014

See all articles by Iain Campbell

Iain Campbell

RMIT University - PVC Design & Social Context

Joo-Cheong Tham

University of Melbourne

Date Written: March 3, 2014

Abstract

This article examines Australia’s main temporary labour migration scheme, the 457 visa program, through the concept of ‘labour market deregulation’. In this article, ‘deregulation’ is not equated with the removal of regulation; rather it is defined to mean the removal of a particular kind of regulation – protective regulation. Applying this concept to the 457 program, the article identifies three protective purposes: protection of the employment opportunities of local workers; protection of the working conditions of local workers; and protection of the working conditions of temporary migrant workers. It argues that this program was deregulated under the Coalition Government (1996-2007) while being subject to re-regulation under the current ALP Government (2007-present). The significance of this study is twofold: it provides a specific analysis of the 457 program, up to and including the most recent changes, and it suggests an analytical approach to examining the regulation of temporary migrant work.

Keywords: temporary labour, 457 visa program, Australia

JEL Classification: K00, K31

Suggested Citation

Campbell, Iain and Tham, Joo-Cheong, Labour Market Deregulation and Temporary Migrant Labour Schemes: An Analysis of the 457 Visa Program (March 3, 2014). Australian Journal of Labour Law, Vol. 25, No. 3, 2013; U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 676. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2404170

Iain Campbell

RMIT University - PVC Design & Social Context ( email )

124 La Trobe Street
Melbourne, 3000
Australia
+(61 3) 9925 3137 (Phone)

Joo-Cheong Tham (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne ( email )

185 Pelham Street
Carlton, Victoria 3053
Australia

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