Crackdown: Australia is clamping down on Irish trying to overstay their visas

Unemployed Irish trade workers hoping to emigrate to Australia have been warned that their visa applications may be canceled under tough new standards on the so-called points list.

The worst affected will be carpenters, bricklayers, gasfitters, electricians, plumbers, hairdressers and mechanics.

The news is a further blow to people working in trades who are already excluded from the few high-skilled visas available for entry into the U.S.

Irish trades people qualified for Australian visas under the Critical Skills List which is being axed as of this month.

The Australians will instead use a tougher new Skilled Occupation List (SOL) to take effect in mid-July 2010.

Robbert Lynch of said the scrapping of the Critical Skills List would be a major blow to Irish people.

“The scrapping of the Migration Occupations in Demand List (MODL) will prove a major blow to many Irish people who would have qualified for visas to Australia, based on the additional ‘points’ available through their occupation or specialisation.

"Traditionally the most popular trades to qualify under the MODL were carpenters, bricklayers, gasfitters, electricians, plumbers, hairdressers and mechanics – now that this is not an option, many people may not be able to get a work visa for Australia.

"We have to monitor the situation closely to see what this new Skilled Occupation List (SOL) will offer people – and how it will affect their plans to live and work in Australia," he said.