Permanent entry visa: economic migration

Independent and sponsored skilled migrants

The migration law states that to enter, an independent migrant must be invited to apply for a subclass 189 visa and gain at least 60 points in the points test, set out above, as it applies to the independent category. Independent category applicants cannot take advantage of the extra points for having a state or territory government sign a sponsorship. Note that since 1 July 2011, being sponsored by a relative no longer gains an applicant any points unless the relative lives in a designated area of Australia.

Designated areas of Australia

Applicants for a skilled – regional-sponsored (provisional) visa, who have a relative in that area gain extra points under the points test. The sponsor must usually be a resident in a designated area.

Designated areas for Australian sponsors

State or territory

Designated areas



South Australia


Northern Territory




Australian Capital Territory



Postcode areas 4019–4028, 4037–4050, 4079–4100, 4114, 4118, 4124–4150, 4158–4168, 4180–4899 (anywhere except Brisbane metropolitan area)

Western Australia


New South Wales

Postcode areas 2311–2312, 2328–2333, 2336–2490, 2535–2551, 2575–2739, 2787–2898 (anywhere except Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong)