Peter Dutton: Allow Asian students to pursue PhD. in Australia, Issue them VISA on time.

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Delay in VISA processing for PhD. Applicants from ASIA

There are 400 (and more) students who have applied for Australian Student VISA 500 PGR and waiting from past 8 months and more (Check references for proofs). These students from China, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh etc have put their research career on stake and waiting for the VISA decision. 

Why is this a problem for students, even after having an option to opt for other countries to pursue their PhD.?

  1. Blocked Time: According to the officially published time in DIBP website (official processing time) it takes 2-3 months to get the VISA (for 90% of the applicants). But for Asian students it is highly unlikely that they will get VISA within the published time frames (In past students have had to wait for 8 months or more to obtain a VISA). 
  2. Blocked Money: To apply for VISA a student needs to submit VISA fee and OSHC (health cover amount) overall (3000 AUD).  This amount gets blocked for 8 months. In such cases it becomes difficult for a student to apply for PhD. in other countries.

Communication with DIBP and other regulatory bodies:

Many inquiries have been done by students in past but there is a common response issued by DIBP to each and every student which is:

'We appreciate that you are concerned at the time taken to process your application. Unfortunately, ensuring all the legal requirements are met in relation to an application can take some time. In particular, it can take several months to obtain any necessary health, character and security clearances from other agencies. The timing for the completion of the checks varies from one case to another, depending on individual circumstances. Unfortunately, I am unable to provide you with a definitive timeframe for finalisation of your application.'

IGIS Australia again has the similar unsatisfactory reply.

Why these replies are unsatisfactory:

Because, for a MS student it takes 2 weeks to get the security clearance (MS students get their VISA within 1 month). For a PhD. student in the same country it cannot take 8 months or more.
Moreover they are a service provider by taking VISA fee DIBP should provide their services in the published time frame. What should be the compensation for the huge delay in service?

What do you think is causing the Delay:

From 2016, Australian DIBP has started putting a halt on student VISA processing for Asian students. According to a few reporting agencies its because of increasing population of students in the country and the belief that most of the PhD. students pursue their studies on university scholarships that doesn't contribute to the million dollar market of international students (which is not actually true).

Request and Conclusion:

We think research plays a vital role in advancement of technology and employment in a country. With the delay Australian government is not only showcasing their bad policies to the the world but also putting a stop on growth and development of Australia. 


We request Australian government to:

  1. Mention an accurate turnaround time for the processing of applications on their website along with statistics (region wise) of processed application and the time it took.
  2. Please announce decision on VISAs which are waiting for more than 4 months.

We want to request to all the educators and researchers out there, to please understand the suffering of students and support us.