Overview

The Australian Government welcomes business migrants to live, work, conduct business and invest in Australia. It values the contribution that business migrants make to the economy through increased exports, investments, job creation and the introduction of new or improved technology.

Starting your own business in Australia may be one of the most exciting choices in your life. The potential rewards are significant, especially if you have researched the current business opportunities available in the Australian market.

Under the business migration program, the type of business you operate is your choice. However, you need to ensure that Australia’s legislation does not restrict you from operating your proposed business. You should check that you satisfy any licensing, registration or residency requirements that may be applicable to your business.

Who the business visa scheme caters to

The scheme caters to business people who:

  • are owners (or part-owners) of a business (or businesses)
  • have a substantial business or investment background who are willing to invest in government bonds in Australia; or
  • are senior executives employed by major businesses who will use their business skills to obtain a substantial ownership interest in a new or existing business in Australia and actively participate in that business at a senior management level
  • have a substantial business background and capital to invest in Australia

Business innovation and investment visa

The first stage involves you applying for the Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188).

The provisional visa includes five streams:

1. Business Innovation stream (188A)
2. Investor stream (188B)
3. Significant Investor stream (188C)
4. Premium Investor stream (188D)
5. Entrepreneur stream (188E)

You need to be nominated by a state or territory government agency or Austrade on behalf of the Australian government if you are seeking to satisfy the primary criteria of the provisional visa of the stream that is assessed to be most appropriate for you.

Holding a provisional visa is the first stage in becoming eligible to qualify for a Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888).

To discover whether you are eligible for a Business visa, we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

Business Innovation stream (subclass 188A)

This provisional visa is for people with business skills. It lets you operate a new or existing business in Australia.

With this visa, you can

  • operate a new or existing business in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) if certain requirements are met
  • leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

Business Innovation (Provisional) visa subclass 188A

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency, before being invited to apply for this visa
  • have ownership of a business with turnover of at least AUD 500,000 for at least 2 of the last 4 fiscal years
  • have net personal and business assets of at least AUD 800,000
  • be under 55 years of age, unless the nominating state or territory certifies that the applicant will make an exceptional economic benefit
  • meet the pass mark in the Business innovation and investment Points test (currently 65 points)
  • have an overall successful career in business
  • have functional English
  • meet health and character requirements
  • have no debt to the Australian Government
  • not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused

Business Innovation (Permanent) visa subclass 888A

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • have been in Australia on subclass 188A visa for at least 12 months, within the 2 years prior to lodgement
  • owned and operated a business in Australia for at least 2 years prior to the application with annual turnover of at least $300,000 for the 2 of last 4 years
  • meet two of the following three criteria for the 12 months:
  • * assets of at least 200,000
    * net personal and business assets of at least $600,000 in Australia
    * employed at least two Australian full-time employees in your business in Australia

Please note that business migration can be extremely complex. To discover whether you are eligible for Business Innovation visa (subclass 188A), we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

There are no standard processing times available for this stream.

This visa costs AUD$5,375 for the main applicant.

There is also a charge for each family member who applies for the visa with you:

  • additional applicant over 18 years old: AUD$2,685
  • additional applicant under 18 years old: AUD$1,345

You must pay an extra charge for any applicant 18 years old or older who has less than functional English.

The second instalment charges are:

  • main applicant: AUD$9,795
  • family members: AUD$4,890

To work out how much your visa might cost use the Visa pricing estimator.

The estimator does not consider other costs you might also have to pay such as those for police certificates, health checks, biometrics and professional fees to get assistance with the visa application process from an immigration lawyer/agent.

Business Investor stream (subclass 188B)

This provisional visa requires you to invest at least AUD1.5 million in an Australian State or Territory and maintain business or investment activity in Australia.

With this visa, you can

  • carry out business and investment activity in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Investor stream if certain requirements are met
  • leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

Business Investor (Provisional) visa subclass 188B

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency, before being invited to apply for this visa
  • have had business and personal net assets of at least AUD 2.25 million for the last 2 fiscal years
  • be under 55 years of age, unless the nominating state or territory certifies that the applicant will make an exceptional economic benefit
  • meet the pass mark in the Business innovation and investment Points test (currently 65 points)
  • have 3 years of experience either managing a qualifying business or “eligible investments”, and have showed a high level of management skill
  • have functional English
  • meet health and character requirements
  • have no debt to the Australian Government
  • not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused

Business Investor (Permanent) visa subclass 888B

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • have been in Australia on your subclass 188B visa for at least 2 years, within the 4 years prior to lodgement
  • maintained your investment in Australian State or Territory bonds for the last 4 years

Please note that business migration can be extremely complex. To discover whether you are eligible for Business Investor visa (subclass 188B), we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

There are no standard processing times available for this stream.

This visa costs AUD$5,375 for the main applicant.

There is also a charge for each family member who applies for the visa with you:

  • additional applicant over 18 years old: AUD$2,685
  • additional applicant under 18 years old: AUD$1,345

You must pay an extra charge for any applicant 18 years old or older who has less than functional English. This charge is the second instalment.

The second instalment charges are:

  • main applicant: AUD$9,795
  • family members: AUD$4,890

To work out how much your visa might cost use the Visa pricing estimator.

The estimator does not consider other costs you might also have to pay such as those for police certificates, health checks, biometrics and professional fees to get assistance with the visa application process from an immigration lawyer/agent.

Business Significant Investor stream (subclass 188C)

This provisional visa is for people who invest at least AUD5 million in Australian investments that meet certain requirements and maintain investment activity in Australia.

With this visa, you can

  • carry out investment activity in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Significant Investor stream if certain requirements are met
  • leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

Business Significant Investor (Provisional) visa subclass 188C

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency, before being invited to apply for this visa
  • make an investment of at least AUD 5 million in a “complying investment” for a minimum period of 4 years
  • have functional English
  • meet health and character requirements
  • have no debt to the Australian Government
  • not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused

Business Significant Investor (Permanent) visa subclass 888C

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must spend a minimum of 160 days in Australia on Significant Investor visa for the last 4 years and be sponsored by a state or territory government.

Please note that business migration can be extremely complex. To discover whether you are eligible for Business Significant Investor visa (subclass 188C), we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

There are no standard processing times available for this stream.

This visa costs AUD$7,880 for the main applicant.

There is also a charge for each family member who applies for the visa with you.

  • additional applicant over 18 years old: AUD$3,940
  • additional applicant under 18 years old: AUD$1,975

You must pay an extra charge for any applicant 18 years old or older who has less than functional English.

The second instalment charges are:

  • main applicant: AUD$9,795
  • family members: AUD$4,890

To work out how much your visa might cost use the Visa pricing estimator.

The estimator does not consider other costs you might also have to pay such as those for police certificates, health checks, biometrics and professional fees to get assistance with the visa application process from an immigration lawyer/agent.

Business Premium Investor stream (subclass 188D)

This provisional visa is for people who are nominated by Austrade and who invest at least AUD15 million in Australian investments and/or philanthropic contributions.

With this visa, you can

  • carry out investment activity in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Premium Investor stream if certain requirements are met
  • leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

Business Premium Investor (Provisional) visa subclass 188D

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • be nominated by Austrade before being invited to apply for this visa
  • receive an invitation to apply
  • make a complying premium investment of at least AUD15 million
  • have net assets of at least AUD15 million. These assets could belong to you, your partner, or you and your partner combined.
  • have functional English
  • meet health and character requirements
  • have no debt to the Australian Government
  • not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused

Business Premium Investor (Permanent) visa subclass 888D

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • have held a provisional visa (subclass 188D) for a minimum of 1 year
  • have held complying premium investments continuously for at least 1 year, and for the entire time you have held your Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188D)

Please note that business migration can be extremely complex. To discover whether you are eligible for Business Innovation visa (subclass 188D), we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

There are no standard processing times available for this stream.

This visa costs AUD$9,455 for the main applicant.
There is also a charge for each family member who applies for the visa with you:

  • family members over 18 years old: AUD$4,725
  • family members under 18 years old: AUD$2,365

You must pay an extra charge for any applicant 18 years old or older who has less than functional English.

The second instalment charges are:

  • main applicant: AUD$9,795
  • family members: AUD$4,890

To work out how much your visa might cost use the Visa pricing estimator.

The estimator does not consider other costs you might also have to pay such as those for police certificates, health checks, biometrics and professional fees to get assistance with the visa application process from an immigration lawyer/agent.

Business Entrepreneur stream (subclass 188E)

This provisional visa lets you carry out entrepreneurial activities in Australia.

With this visa, you can

  • carry out entrepreneurial activity in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Entrepreneur stream if certain requirements are met
  • leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

Business (Provisional) visa Entrepreneur Stream (subclass 188E)

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • be nominated by a state or territory government
  • have competent english
  • be under 55 Years of age, unless a State or Territory Government nominates you as providing an “exceptional economic benefit” to the state or territory
  • have funding agreement in place for at least $200,000 to establish a venture in Australia
  • have ownership interest of at least 30% in the venture

Business Entrepreneur (Permanent) visa (subclass 888E)

To be eligible to apply for this visa, applicants must:

  • be nominated by a state or territory government
  • have held a Subclass 188E visa for a continuous period of at least 4 years immediately before the application is submitted, and have demonstrated overall a successful record of entrepreneurial activities in Australia while holding the visa
  • have resided in Australia for at least 2 years of the 4 years that you have held the provisional visa
  • have a successful record of entrepreneurial activities
  • not have been involved in unacceptable business or investment activities
  • have a realistic commitment to continuing business or investment activities
  • have functional English
  • have followed Australian laws
  • meet our character requirement
  • have no debt to the Australian government
  • not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused

Please note that business migration can be extremely complex. To discover whether you are eligible for Business Innovation visa (subclass 188E), we invite you to book a consultation with one of our expert migration lawyers.

Unavailable due to low volume of applications.

This visa costs AUD$4,045 for the main applicant.

There is also a charge for each family member who applies for the visa with you:

  • additional applicant over 18 years old: AUD$2,025
  • additional applicant under 18 years old: AUD$1,010

You must pay an extra charge for any applicant 18 years old or older who has less than functional English.

The second instalment charges are:

  • main applicant: AUD$9,795
  • family members: AUD$4,890

To work out how much your visa might cost use the Visa pricing estimator.

The estimator does not consider other costs you might also have to pay such as those for police certificates, health checks, biometrics and professional fees to get assistance with the visa application process from an immigration lawyer/agent.

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