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Emigrating – Work Opportunities Abroad

1408611_76570866Tired of the recession and/or the British weather and fancy starting a new life abroad? Read on to discover the work opportunities in Australia, New Zealand and Canada.


With a booming economy, Australia is looking more attractive than ever to many Brits. More than 70,000 people from the UK have moved to Oz over the last five years – with Western Australia currently the most popular destination.

What jobs are there?
Medicine, engineering, IT, accountancy, sales, marketing and law are among the areas which have been identified as having some of the largest shortfalls in skilled workers. ‘The biggest opportunity is the mining boom currently taking place in Western Australia,’ says John Weir, director of jobs and emigration event Down Under Live.

‘It is estimated by the Australian government that the resources industry will need an extra 89,000 workers by 2016 and there will be a peak of 49,000 short term construction jobs in 2014 as the drive to extract resources gathers pace.’ The number of permanent visa places has increased to 190,000 for 2012/13 – with just under 130,000 places for skilled workers and more than 60,000 family visas available.

How do I get in?
Australia operates a points-based system to determine who it will accept as an immigrant, with full details on the government website ( Points are awarded for age (with younger applicants favoured), skills, qualifications, English language abilities and work experience. A Skilled Occupations List (SOL) is published detailing the specific job sectors which are desired. One of the most popular routes is to be ‘sponsored’ by an Australian employer, so it could pay dividends to research opportunities within your industry on the internet.


Another nation with strong historic links to the UK, New Zealand continues to be popular with many Brits starting a new life. The country’s economy grew by 3.7 per cent last year – a figure which would be envied by many European leaders.
What jobs are there?
New Zealand is in the grip of an unusual jobs crisis, with many professionals and skilled tradespeople having upped sticks for Europe or Australia – which has created opportunities for Immigrants who possess the skills and experience required by the country.

Demand is particularly high in the province of Canterbury, which includes the earthquake-shattered city of Christchurch, on the stunningly beautiful South Island. The huge, ongoing rebuild effort following the quake of 2011 means that construction workers and tradespeople are still in demand. John Weir explained that demand for white collar workers was also booming in the region, saying: ‘Statistics show the number of banking and financial services jobs advertised in Canterbury grew 280 per cent year-on-year.

‘Demand for marketing and communications professionals rose by 189 per cent, for legal staff by 183 per cent and insurance and superannuation by 171 per cent.’

How do I get in?
To secure residency in New Zealand you’ll need to either be qualified in occupations which are in demand, have a job offer from an accredited employer or have ‘exceptional talent in sport or the arts’.

The NZ government’s website provides more information and includes detailed lists of the Essential Skills In Demand (ESID) at the present time (


While the USA is notoriously difficult to emigrate to, its northerly neighbour is comparatively welcoming to newcomers if you have the skills it requires. And the government recently announced that it will maintain record levels of immigration in 2013 – admitting a total of 240,000 to 265,000 new permanent residents for the seventh year running.

What jobs are there?
Canada is a huge and sparsely populated country, with most of the jobs concentrated in the four major cities of Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver and Montreal. Health care and social assistance workers are among the most in-demand – and expanding industries have bemoaned a lack of highly skilled workers in various job categories.

Canadian newspaper The Globe And Mail quotes Brian Doody, CEO of electronics firm Teledyne Dalsa Inc, as highlighting a shortage of ‘highly qualified scientific and technical personnel’, saying his company has been looking for candidates for certain posts for ‘more than a year’. He estimates that there are 1,900 vacancies for tech jobs in the Kitchener-Waterloo region ‘that are unfilled and have been for some time’. Unemployment is still significant in Canada though, so opportunities may not be as plentiful or varied as in Australia or New Zealand.

How do I get in?
As with many other nations, Canada operates a points-based system to decide which immigrants to accept – and again it is highly skilled workers who stand the best chance of entering. The province of Quebec and the rest of Canada operate separate immigration systems, but those who speak both English and French will be favoured in both. Shorter visas are available for some jobs – with truck drivers being particularly in demand at the moment.

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