Living in Victoria

NSW Image
Victoria is one of the most multicultural communities in the world – with one in four Victorians born overseas. We have a strong economy, world-class health and education systems, a temperate climate, a stable and democratic political system and vibrant regional centres. Melbourne has repeatedly been voted one of the world’s most liveable cities. In March 2006, we staged the biggest and most successful Commonwealth Games ever. And we are making the necessary plans and investments to ensure we continue to grow in an environmentally, economically and socially sustainable manner.

Victoria has an unwavering commitment to migration that stretches back to the settlement of Victoria more than 150 years ago. Thousands of skilled and business migrants have been making Victoria their home since the 1850's.

The Victorian Government is working to make Victoria an even better destination for new migrants and the number of skilled and business migrants settling in Victoria continues to increase. Today, one in every three migrants to Australia is choosing Victoria as their new home.

Wonderful opportunities exist for skilled and business migrants in Victoria right now, in a range of new and established industries, both in regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne.

Our growing economy produces a strong need for qualified and experienced people to take up the challenge, move their careers to Victoria and invest their future with us. For business migrants, the strong economy means Victoria is an ideal location for many international companies, small businesses, importers and exporters. Our state-of-the-art research and technology facilities, skilled professionals, advanced manufacturing and cost competitive infrastructure combine to enable business people to be innovative and lead in the global market.

Victoria is a place where migrants are welcome and feel welcome.


Major industries

The Victorian Government supports commercial activity and offers entrepreneurs opportunities in a stable and transparent business environment.

Victoria’s strong economic performance is driven by a vibrant business community of more than 300,000 small enterprises. A highly educated, multi-lingual workforce, combined with ready access to 60 per cent of Australia’s consumer market, positions Victoria as a preferred business destination in the Asia Pacific region.

Key industries with business opportunities

Automotive - Victoria is the home of Australia's automotive industry and three out of four of Australia's engine plants (Holden, Ford and Toyota). Victoria accounts for about 70 per cent of automotive Research and Development and almost 60 per cent of Australia’s automotive industry.

Biotechnology - Victoria is home to the largest biotechnology company base in Australia.

Education - Victoria’s international students represent an $2 billion per annum industry, which is the largest in Australia.

Finance - Australia is the fourth largest funds management market in the world and Victoria is considered the centre for industry superannuation funds, with around 65 per cent of total Australian industry funds under management in Victoria.

Food - Victoria produces around 30 per cent of Australia's food products including around 80 per cent of Australia's dairy exports and 13 per cent of world trade in manufactured dairy products.

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) – Victoria has a globally focused ICT industry with a turnover of AUD$40 billion and a skilled workforce of more than 70,000.

International Trade - Melbourne is the centre of Australia’s international trade, with more than a 40 per cent of Australia’s share of import/export activity.

Tourism - Tourism in Victoria is an $10.6 billion industry. Tourists spend on average $16 million per day on goods and services in Victoria.

Manufacturing - Victoria accounts for around one-third of Australia's total manufacturing output.

Victoria, a Snap Shot

  • Home to five million people – just under a quarter of Australia’s population
  • Broad and well developed economy – Victoria generates about 26 per cent of Australia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
  • Industry strength in manufacturing, information and communication technology, agriculture, food production and processing, medical research, financial services and tourism
  • Stable and democratic political system
  • One in four Victorians was born in another country – people from more than 230 different countries have made Victoria their home
  • Top five languages other than English are Italian, Greek, Vietnamese, Cantonese, Mandarin and Arabic

Victoria’s Weather

Sale (South_East region) 
Wangaratta (North_East region) 
Mildura (North_West region) 
Warrnambool (South_West region) 
Ballarat (Western_region) 
AverageMax temp degrees c° 

Ref. Bureau of Meteorology, Australia 2005

Refer to


· Melbourne is home to more than 3.6 million people from more than 230 nations
· Australian headquarters of many international companies as well as State and Federal government agencies
· An efficient transport system with trams, trains, buses and a well-linked road network
· Many of Australia’s best schools and universities
· Quality land and houses at affordable prices
· Vast areas of public parkland

Festivals and Events in Victoria

Victoria is home to international sporting events and festivals including:

· Australian Open Tennis Championship
· Heineken Golf Classic
· Melbourne International Music Festival
· Australian Formula One Grand Prix
· Australian International Airshow
· Rip Curl Pro Surfing at Bells Beach
· Melbourne Cup Horse Racing
· Melbourne International Comedy Festival
· Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show
· Melbourne International Arts Festival
· Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix
· Spring Racing Carnival including the Melbourne Cup
· The Yarra Valley Grape Grazing Wine Festival
· Echuca-Moama’s Riverboats, Jazz, Food and Wine Festival
· Port Fairy Folk Festival

Housing in Victoria

Victoria offers a broad range of houses to accommodate all households and family sizes. Homes are available in many architectural styles ranging from the Victorian and Art Deco periods through to modern and contemporary design, including:

· Detached houses with private gardens on small to large blocks of land
· Semi-detached houses with gardens
· Terrace houses and apartments
· Townhouses with private courtyards
· Modern apartment blocks and inner-city lofts
· High-rise apartment towers

Education in Victoria

• About 90,000 international students study in Victoria’s secondary schools, universities and colleges
• Victoria is home to many of Australia’s most prestigious universities
• Australia has been rated as one of the most effective and affordable education systems of the world’s richest countries (UNICEF Innocenti Report Card No. 4, A League table of Education Disadvantage in Rich Nations, November 2002)
• Australian students have some of the highest levels of maths and science skills, and have been rated fifth for reading ability of OECD countries (The OECD Program for International Assessment Survey [PISA], 2006)

Health in Victoria

· Victorians benefit from a free public health system operating from 150 public hospitals
· The Australian Government’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme ensures approved medicines are available at affordable prices
· Australians are offered a 30 per cent rebate on the costs of private health insurance
· Some overseas health insurance can be transferred to an Australian health fund without penalty

Travelling in Victoria

Victoria is geographically compact, making it easy to get around - by car, train, tram, bus or plane. Victoria’s transport system includes:

· An efficient, integrated and safe public transport service
· Australia’s best road network - carrying more than 25 per cent of Australia’s traffic
· Melbourne Airport - Australia’s only 24 hour airport that services international, domestic and regional flights
· Melbourne’s tram system - the third largest in the world with nearly 500 trams and 1770 stops across Melbourne
· Port of Melbourne - the largest container port in the Southern Hemisphere

Business Migration

Why do business migrants choose Victoria?

· Excellent living standards
· World-renowned education system
· Multicultural communities
· Abundant business opportunities

Have you owned or operated a successful overseas business for at least two years?

You may be eligible to join the hundreds of business migrants arriving each year to take advantage of Victoria’s desirable living and business environment.

If you meet the Australian Government’s migration requirements we can assist you with a range of services:

· We provide State Sponsorship - if required by the Australian Government’s Department of Immigration
· Business Proposals for provisional visas are usually assessed within 30 days
· Applications for sponsorship for permanent residency visas are assessed within 30 days

Skilled Migration

Demand is high for skilled migrants across Victoria’s industries. The Victorian Government’s Skilled and Business Migration Program helps skilled professionals and tradespeople migrate to Victoria.

Sponsorship and visas

There are several state-sponsored skilled visa options available through the Victorian Government:

To qualify for skilled migration visas you will need to:

• be under 50 years of age
• have a good standard of English
• have a skilled occupation and a professional or trade qualification recognised in Australia
• have recent work experience in your nominated occupation

However, there are exceptions to these requirements.

The Victorian Government is supporting Victorian regions outside of metropolitan Melbourne to provide local assistance for skilled and business migrants.

Locally based Regional Migration Coordinators can link migrants with local employers and community groups, and provide information about housing, education and employment.

Services in regional Victoria

The Victorian Government is supporting 11 Victorian regions outside of metropolitan Melbourne to provide local assistance for skilled and business migrants.

Locally based Regional Migration Coordinators can link migrants with local employers and community groups, and provide information about housing, education and employment.

Regional Victoria

Regional Victoria is home to 30 per cent – 1.34 million – of the State’s population.
Victoria’s large regional centres offer great career opportunities for skilled migrants in a range of industries including education, health services, horticulture and agriculture, and many trades.

Regional centres offer well-developed infrastructure, cosmopolitan lifestyles, affordable housing, high quality local workforces and superb recreational facilities.

South East Victoria

South East Victoria, also known as the Gippsland region, stretches from Melbourne’s wine region, the Yarra Valley, through the grazing country of the Latrobe Valley to the magnificent lakes and Ninety Mile Beach in the east. It includes the regional centres of Traralgon, Bairnsdale and Sale. The region also includes the Strezlecki Ranges and Wilson’s Promontory National Park.


· Economic strengths include timber processing, paper product manufacturing, agriculture, horticulture, fishing and tourism
· The Latrobe Valley is the source of the majority of Victoria’s electricity, with large reserves of brown coal
· Post-secondary education including the East Gippsland Institute of TAFE and a campus of Monash University at Churchill
· Australia’s number one highway runs through the region, making travel to Melbourne an easy drive
· The region has one of Australia’s strongest dairy industries due to rich soil and dependable rainfall


· A nature-lover’s paradise with more than 20 national parks, rugged mountains and long sandy beaches
· West Gippsland, also known as the gourmet deli region, is renowned for its fresh foods and local produce
· Phillip Island – home to the nightly fairy penguin parade and the Australian Motor Cycle Grand Prix
· The Gippsland Lakes - the largest network of inland waterways in Australia

Skills in Demand

Current skills in demand in South East Victoria include (but are not limited to):

· Trades - including carpenters, plumbers, electricians
· Hospitality - particularly chefs
· Health professionals – particularly nurses
· Dairy farm managers

North East Victoria

North East Victoria, otherwise known as the Hume region, includes the regional centres of Wangaratta, Shepparton, Benalla and Wodonga. The region is the northern gateway to Victoria’s famous High Country and alpine resorts.


· Industries include dairy processing, commercial fishing, wine production, food processing, manufacturing and technology
· The Goulburn Valley, one of Australia's major fruit-growing regions with fruit and dairy products exported all over the world
· Quality secondary education and several post-secondary education opportunities including Goulburn-Ovens Institute of TAFE, campuses of La Trobe University and the University of Melbourne
· Top class sporting facilities including the Wodonga Tennis Centre – one of the largest tennis complexes in the Southern Hemisphere – and championship golf courses with magnificent alpine views
· Strategically located between Melbourne and the other Australian capital cities of Adelaide and Sydney – Australia’s three major ports can all be reached overnight – providing excellent opportunities for both domestic and export markets
· Regional Airport at Albury-Wodonga with direct links to Melbourne and Sydney


· Vibrant cultural events including the award-winning Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and the Man from Snowy River Festival
· World-class wineries and gourmet food trails
· The scenic Great Alpine Road, which extends from Wangaratta across the Victorian Alps all the way to the Gippsland Lakes

Skills in Demand

Current skills in demand in North East Victoria include (but are not limited to):

· Mechanics
· Chefs
· Metalworkers
· Pre-primary and secondary teachers
· Health professionals - particularly nurses

South West Victoria

South West Victoria, also known as the Barwon South West region, includes the regional cities of Geelong, Warrnambool, Hamilton, Colac and Portland. The coastline stretches from Geelong’s Corio Bay along the rugged Great Ocean Road towards South Australia.


· The region’s economic strengths include agriculture (wool, cattle), forestry, horticulture, automotive, aluminium smelting and tourism
· Warrnambool is one of Victoria’s major dairy farming centres
· Geelong is Victoria’s second largest city and home of Ford Australia. Melbourne is easily accessible by car and has express trains (45-minutes) to Melbourne.
· The region is home to some of Australia’s leading schools and university campuses
· Portland has the only deepwater port between Melbourne and Adelaide and is a major export centre for the region’s produce


· Warrnambool’s rugged ‘Shipwreck Coast’, which is also a migration path and nursery for giant southern right whales
· The delicious local produce on the Otway Gourmet Food and Wine Trail, from breads and ice creams to berries, cheeses and wine
· The Otway Ranges temperate rainforest, including the 25 metre high Otway Fly tree-top walk
· The Great Ocean Road – the famous road which follows the coast from Victoria’s surfing capital, Torquay, past the Twelve Apostles rock formation to the South Australian border

Skills in Demand

Current skills in demand in South West Victoria include (but are not limited to):

· Building and construction
· Health professionals
· Chefs
· Manufacturing
· Engineers

West Victoria

West Victoria includes the Central Highlands and the wheat belt of the Wimmera and is also known as the Grampians region. The region includes the regional cities of Ballarat, Ararat and Horsham. Features

· Highly successful agribusiness ventures and manufacturers of high-tech machinery components
· Wheat production in the Wimmera lands, surrounding Horsham, which contribute more than $600 million annually to the Victorian economy
· Ballarat, a 90 minute drive from Melbourne, reflects the wealth of the gold rush era with its many fine homes. In 2006, Ballarat will be linked to Melbourne by a 65-minute express rail service
· A range of quality schools and post-secondary education including University of Ballarat and a campus of Australian Catholic University Attractions
· Ararat is the only Australian town founded by the Chinese. You can explore the unique Chinese heritage at the Gum San Chinese Heritage Centre and the Langi Morgala Museum
· Award-winning wineries in the Pyrenees and Grampians wine regions
· Mt Arapiles – this summit is a favourite for rock climbing and for a scenic perspective on the region
· Sovereign Hill – a re-creation of gold rush times at Ballarat

Skills in Demand

Current skills in demand in West Victoria include (but are not limited to):

· Secondary teachers
· Welders
· Health professionals
· Town planners
· Engineers

North West Victoria

North West Victoria, also known as the Loddon Mallee region, includes the regional cities of Mildura, Swan Hill, Echuca, Maryborough and Bendigo.

It is a region of contrasts, from the rich agriculture and vineyards around Mildura, to the grain farms of Ouyen and the desert national parks in the far north west.


· Mildura is surrounded by an irrigated agricultural zone that produces wine, dried fruits, citrus fruits, olives and vegetables. It is home to some of the largest processing and packing plants in the world.
· Mildura is a 70 minute flight to Melbourne and has the busiest regional airport in Victoria
· Bendigo is the geographical centre of Victoria and the key city in the region, with an economy built on gold and sustained by manufacturing, tourism and regional services
· The North West is home to four campuses of the Sunraysia Institute of TAFE – Mildura, Swan Hill, Robinvale and Ouyen (Mallee)
· Bendigo offers an extensive range of renowned public and private schools as well as post-secondary education institutions such as the Bendigo Regional Institute of TAFE and a campus of La Trobe University


· Mildura and Swan Hill are both popular destinations to enjoy the Murray River
· Wells Track, near Maryborough, features some of Victoria’s best examples of aboriginal rock water wells
· Bendigo’s renowned heritage buildings and sites
· The river port of Echuca on the Murray River, where you can ride a paddle steamer or hire a houseboat, go fishing, swimming and waterskiing

Skills in Demand

Current skills in demand in North West Victoria include (but are not limited to):

· Metalworkers
· Horticulture/ agriculture
· Health professionals - particularly nurses
· Construction trades
· Mining engineers
· Automotive electricians and motor mechanics