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Country profile - India

​​​​​​​Population

At the end of June 2022, 753,520 Indian-born people were living in Australia, more than twice the number (355,380) at 30 June 2012. After the United Kingdom, the Indian-born population is the second largest migrant community in Australia, equivalent to 9.8 per cent of Australia's overseas-born population and 2.9 per cent of Australia's total population.

For Australia's Indian-born migrants:

  • The median age of 35.9 years was 2.6 years below that of the general population.
  • Males outnumbered females—54.2 per cent compared with 45.8 per cent.

(Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia’s Population by Country of Birth)

Permanent migration

Australia's permanent Migration Program incorporates economic and family migration and is the main pathway to permanent residence. It includes the Skill stream, Family stream, and Special Eligibility visas. The only other way to obtain permanent residence is on humanitarian grounds.

Skill stream visas

The Skill stream is designed for workers who have the skills, qualifications and entrepreneurship most needed in the Australian economy. There are seven components: 

  1. Business Innovation and Investment

  2. Distinguished Talent

  3. Employer Sponsored

  4. Global Talent (Independent)

  5. Regional

  6. Skilled Independent

  7. State/Territory Nominated.

Family and Child stream visas

The Family stream allows the permanent migration of close family members, of Australian citizens, permanent residents, and eligible New Zealand citizens. It focuses on partners and parents, but also provides the opportunity for additional family members, such as aged dependent relatives, carers, remaining relatives and orphan relatives, to join their family in Australia.

Child visas allow the permanent migration of children, of Australian citizens, permanent residents, and eligible New Zealand citizens. The Child visa comprises two categories, namely Child and Adoption visas.

Special Eligibility visas

Special Eligibility visas allow former residents and certain people who served in the Australian Defence Force to live in Australia as permanent residents.

The following table shows the size of permanent migration from India by migration category.

Table 1: Permanent migrant places granted, 2019–20 to 2022–23
​Migration category2019–202020–212021–22​2022–23
Business Innovation and Investment89168316112
Employer Sponsored4,7184,4375,8458,187
Skilled Independent3,2251,1406995,074
State/Territory Nominated6,1494,0525,3869,740
Regional 17,5854,6385,93112,192
Global Talent (Independent) 23981,1161,398931
Partner2,6845,5153,9543,815
All other categories8508157951,094
Total places granted 25,698 21,791 24,324 41,145
Source: Department of Home Affairs
1The Regional migration category commenced 1 July 2019.
2Global Talent (Independent) category commenced 4 November 2019.

Temporary migration

People can come to Australia for a temporary stay for a range of purposes, for example, visiting Australia for tourism or attending a conference, or for more specific purposes, such as medical treatment, study, skilled work, working holidays or other specialist activities. There are six main categories of temporary residents, which can cover stays of more than three months in Australia.

Note: Not all categories apply to migrants from each country.

Visitor visas

Visitor visas are mostly used by people visiting Australia for holidays, tourism and recreation, or to see family and friends. People may also use Visitor visas for certain short-term business activities that do not entail working in Australia.

Working Holiday Maker Program

The Working Holiday Maker Program allows young adults to have an extended holiday and engage in short-term work and study.

Student visa

The Student visa program enables international students to come to Australia to study full-time in a registered course.

Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visa

Allows a business to sponsor a skilled overseas worker if they cannot find an appropriately skilled Australian citizen or permanent resident to fill a skilled position.

Other temporary visas

Other temporary visas include visas that allow people to undertake short-term, non-ongoing highly specialised work, enrich social and cultural development, strengthen international relations or provide training opportunities of benefit to Australia.

New Zealand citizens

Under the 1973 Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement, New Zealand citizens can enter and leave Australia freely and live in Australia indefinitely on grant of a Special Category visa (subclass 444).

The following table shows the number of visa grants from India, for Visitor, Student and Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visas.

Table 2: Temporary visas granted by selected categories, 2019–20 to 2022–23
​Temporary visa category2019–202020–212021–22​2022–23
Visitor222,78529,502200,325357,038
Student55,56047,03142,627102,696
Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment)13,43410,07118,71727,402
Other temporary visa grants 129,65719,95730,98097,351
Total temporary visa grants 321,436 106,561 292,649 584,487
Source: Department of Home Affairs
1Excludes Transit visa (subclass 771), Border visa (subclass 773) and Maritime Crew visa (subclass 988).

Main occupations

The following table shows the main occupations for nationals of India, based on Skill stream migration outcomes and Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visa grants.

Table 3: Main occupations, 2019–20 to 2022–23
PeriodTemporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visasNo. of migrantsSkill stream migrationNo. of migrants
2022–23Software and applications programmers3,349Registered nurses2,452
ICT business and systems analysts1,687Software and applications programmers1,923
ICT support and test engineers1,100Chefs1,229
Registered nurses475Accountants1,218
ICT managers399ICT business and systems analysts919
Chefs364Industrial, mechanical and production engineers905
Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists357Civil engineering professionals553
Computer network professionals273Motor mechanics515
Accountants224Other engineering professionals484
Management and organisation analysts200Enrolled and mothercraft nurses386
2021–22Software and applications programmers4,124Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists1,925
ICT business and systems analysts971ICT business and systems analysts1,093
ICT support and test engineers628Multimedia specialists and web developers811
Chefs388Auditors, company secretaries and corporate treasurers510
ICT managers228Cooks464
Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists228Mining engineers441
Accountants213ICT support and test engineers298
Registered nurses194Massage therapists253
Computer network professionals166Electrical engineers234
Management and organisation analysts106Computer network professionals224
2020–21Software and applications programmers2,281Software and applications programmers1,530
ICT support and test engineers616Registered nurses929
ICT business and systems analysts429ICT business and systems analysts525
ICT managers144Industrial, mechanical and production engineers379
Registered nurses143Accountants314
Chefs109Computer network professionals258
Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists93Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists212
Cooks84Other engineering professionals204
General practitioners and resident medical officers81Cooks170
Management and organisation analysts78Civil engineering professionals153
2019–20Software and applications programmers2,225Software and applications programmers1,672
ICT business and systems analysts1,020Registered nurses1,025
ICT support and test engineers658Cooks743
ICT managers282Accountants737
Registered nurses192ICT business and systems analysts574
Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists175Chefs314
Management and organisation analysts163Cafe and restaurant managers313
Cooks129Database and systems administrators, and ICT security specialists278
Computer network professionals128Other engineering professionals274
Chefs111Computer network professionals269
Source: Department of Home Affairs
Note: Occupation level information is available for primary applicants only, and is based on Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations unit level data.

Geographic distribution

The following table shows the geographic distribution of migrants, based on permanent additions for the Skill and Family streams, international student visa grants, and Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visa grants.

Table 4: Geographic distribution
​PopulationNSWVicQldSAWATasNT​ACT
Census 2021 (%)
Of all persons322620710212
Of Indian-born31381179113
Permanent additions - 2022–23 (%)
​Skill stream2528101511524
Family and Child stream29431059012
Temporary visa grants - 2022–23 (%)
International student visa grants2532171110212
Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visa (primary) grants4738716001
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics and Department of Home Affairs
Note: Permanent additions consist of two components; those persons who, while already in Australia on a temporary basis, are granted permanent residence status or those persons who have subsequently arrived from overseas during the reporting period and are entitled to stay permanently in Australia.

Country ranking

This table uses rankings to show the significance of Indian migration for the past four financial years.

Table 5: Country ranking, 2019–20 to 2022–23
Ranked position of migrants2019–202020–212021–22​2022–23
Population in Australia 12222
Regional1111
Employer Sponsored1111
Total Skill stream1111
Total Family and Child stream2422
International students2221
Temporary Resident (Skilled Employment) visa1111
Visitors5213
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics and Department of Home Affairs
1Population level data is by country of birth and lags one year behind the financial year specified. Data based on the estimated residential population at 30 June; 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022.

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