Posted in: Blog by Rob on 17/06/2011

Sometime over the next couple of days, we’ll break the 1,000,000 post mark on our Australia MIgration and British Expat Forum –
To celebrate, we’ll be offering a cash giveaway to the person making the one millionth post

New Queensland Forum

Posted in: Forum News by Rob on 15/06/2011

Life in QueenslandOver the weekend we re-branded and moved our Queensland migration forum –

The forum has now moved/relocated to a new domain – as we look to shift the focus to focus on the state of Queensland as a whole, rather than just the Gold Coast / Sunshine coast areas.

As well as changing the domain name, we upgraded the forum from vbulletin3 -> vbulletin4, installed a new template to give the site a fresh new look and have re-organised the categories.

Live chat with industry experts in moving abroad

Posted in: Migration News by Rob on 20/03/2011

Plan ahead by moving overseas with the experts!

Moving to Australia is not without its ups and downs. To make sure you stay ahead of the game, it pays to be well informed. Everyone wants to start their new life down under with as much money as possible and there are a number of things you can do to ensure you make the most of your funds. Key topics always discussed on the forum include moving your possessions and transferring your money into your new Australian bank account.

Our sister site, Poms in Oz is hosting Live Chat sessions with leading experts in banking, currency exchange, international removals and tax. These sessions will take place on 22nd March 2011 from 8pm-10pm (UK Time). National Australia Bank, Moneycorp, PSS International Removals and Iron Chef Imports (other companies tbc) will be on hand to answer any questions you may have about your move.

To take part, use this link – Chat with Industry Experts

Once the chat software has loaded, tick the ‘Guest’ option at the top of the chat window, then choose a username and click ‘Login’, you’ll then be able to enter the ‘Moneycorp, NAB, PSS or IronChef’ chat rooms.

National Australia Bank

Rebecca Joils will talk about the Australian Banking system providing you with some insights as to what is different between the UK and Australia. She will also talk about how straight forward it is to open an Australian Bank account before you leave home and some of the services you should consider.


Whether you are moving to Australia, or living there already, John Kinghorn will bring you the latest updates on the Aussie dollar and provide insight into the key factors influencing market movements. Exchange rates are constantly fluctuating and transferring your funds at the right time, via the right channel, can make a big difference to the amount of money you actually end up with.

PSS International Removals

One of the key ingredients when you are moving overseas is the planning of your removal. Liam Witham will be on hand to offer advice and answer any questions you may have regarding the packing and shipping of your household effects, including what items you can ship to Australia, Australian Customs procedures and AQIS. Whether you are importing household effects or just a vehicle, it is never too early to start researching or to start the process.

Iron Chef Imports

Iron Chef Imports is a small, Australian-based business that specialises in arranging transportation of vehicles from anywhere in the world to any port in Australia. For a fixed brokerage fee, we can help arrange your vehicle’s import approval paperwork, shipping, customs clearance and registration in Australia. Aside from our fee, all other costs are invoiced to you directly – no hidden markups! We’re also happy to advise you if it’s worth bringing your car over before you start (that part’s free!).

Australia Settler Arrivals 2009 -2010

Posted in: Migration News by Rob on 02/03/2011

Settler Arrivals 2009-10 is the latest in the annual series of statistical publications that provides information on people arriving in Australia to live permanently. The report is available online at:

The top five nationalities for migrants settling in Australia are mirrored by those choosing the Smart State as their new home, according to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s (DIAC) Settler Arrivals 2009-10 publication

Victoria was the first choice for Chinese and Indian migrants in 2009-10, according to the latest edition of the Department and Immigration and Citizenship’s (DIAC) Settler Arrivals publication.
Victoria remains a popular destination for migrants from around the world with settlers continuing to choose the state to start their new lives.

New South Wales
New South Wales remained the most popular destination for migrants to settle in 2009-10, despite an increasing number of new arrivals choosing to live in other states.
The Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s (DIAC) Settler Arrivals 2009-10 publication shows the number of people settling in the state decreasing from 47 030 in 2008-09 to 42 267 last financial year.
Chinese and Indian were the top two nationalities migrating to NSW in 2009-10, with 7062 Chinese and 4441 Indian migrants settling in the state.

South Australia
The number of migrants permanently settling in South Australia grew substantially last year, increasing from 9695 in 2008-09 to 11 377 in 2009-10 – an increase of 17.3 per cent. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s (DIAC) latest edition of Settler Arrivals also shows that SA remains a popular destination for migrants from the United Kingdom and India, with an increasing number of people from these countries making the move.

Western Australia
The United Kingdom and New Zealand have topped the list of source countries of migrants in Western Australia, according to the latest edition of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s Settler Arrivals publication.

There is a steady rise in the number of migrants choosing to settle permanently in Tasmania, according to figures in the Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s (DIAC) Settler Arrivals 2009-10 report.
A departmental spokesman said the number of migrants settling in Tasmania has slowly climbed in the past five years, from 879 people in 2005-06 to 1250 in 2009-10.
Tasmania was the state of choice for migrants from the United Kingdom and New Zealand. There were 129 settlers from the UK and 111 from New Zealand

Northern Territory
The Northern Territory continues to attract permanent migrants, with the number of people settling in the Top End increasing in the 2009-10 period.
The Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s (DIAC) Settler Arrivals 2009-10 publication shows an increase in the number of migrants choosing the NT, from 1079 in 2008-09 to 1196 in 2009-10.
The NT has been most popular with migrants from the Philippines and the United Kingdom, who were recorded as the top two nationalities choosing to start their new lives in the Top End.

The Australian Capital Territory maintained high numbers of permanent migrants in 2009-10, with the total number of arrivals choosing Canberra as their home reaching more than 1850 for the second year running.
While the 1869 permanent additions to the nation’s capital in 2009-10 fell short of the record 1942 in 2008-09, the numbers are well above the levels reached over the past 10 years.
The number of migrants settling permanently in the ACT has climbed steadily since the 809 arrivals in 1999-00, showing the ACT remains a popular destination for migrants

On the national front, there were 140 610 settler arrivals in Australia in 2009-10, a decrease of 11 per cent from the previous year. “The numbers of settler arrivals are now near the level they were in 2006-07,” a departmental spokesman said.

The figures show that New Zealand and China are now the top two source countries by birth, with India, the United Kingdom and South Africa making up the remaining countries in the top five. A departmental spokesman said the Australian Government was committed to a migration program which was targeted to help grow Australia’s economy and meet critical labour needs.

“The Australian Government has undertaken a series of strategic reforms of the skilled migration program, to make it more responsive to Australia’s labour market demands,” the spokesman said. “These reforms are about selecting the best and brightest people from a large pool of potential migrants.”

The government announced in the 2010-11 Budget a total of 168 700 places for migration, comprising a total skill stream of 113 850 places, a total family stream of 54 550 places and 300 special eligibility places.

“This will increase the proportion of skilled migrants to 67.5 per cent of the migration program to further address Australia’s needs as the economic climate improves while still ensuring places for family migration and reunion,” the spokesman said.

Australian dollar update 18 January 2011

Posted in: Blog by Rob on 21/01/2011


Some analysts think so; this week’s inflation figures may provide a clue. Australian employment change disappoints.

Sterling continued the previous weeks advance until Friday, when it paused to take stock. It opened in London this morning three and a half cents better on the week.

Sterling had a fairly easy ride through the week’s few economic statistics. Having managed to dodge a fall in the Halifax house price index it went on to sidestep a -0.3% drop in the British Retail Consortium’s retail sales figure, taking the BRC’s word for it that it was only the hideous weather in December that spoiled the result. Another record monthly trade deficit was close enough to forecasts to avoid doing any damage. Industrial and manufacturing production figures were both higher in November, manufacturing by 0.6% and the broader industrial production (including mining and energy) by 0.4%. They, too, were in line with expectations.

The figures that did make a difference – and a positive one – were Friday’s producer price index (PPI) numbers. They were pretty punchy. Manufacturers’ costs increased by 12.5% in the year to December while factory gate prices rose by 4.2%. Leaving aside the implication that gross profit margins are being horribly squeezed, the 4.2% rise in factory gate prices suggests that at least some of the increase must pass through to retail prices.

Although the Bank of England made no change to monetary policy on Thursday and has said nothing to suggest that interest rates are going up any time soon, the PPI numbers prompted investors to wonder whether they might. Rightly or wrongly the market has begun to think a rate increase will come sooner than previously thought. Some analysts say May. Consumer price index (CPI) inflation data this week are expected to show an official inflation rate of 3.3%. The old retail price index (RPI), arguably a better measure of the real cost of living, could be up by 4.8% on the year. Add to that a belief among the general public that prices will rise by 3.9% this year and the pressure for a rate increase becomes even greater. It is all very well for the Bank to say the current high inflation rate is the result of temporary pressures – it may even be true – but if people and businesses believe it will rise even further the belief itself will push prices higher. An early interest rate increase could be used to nip that idea in the bud.

With the European currencies pushing ahead, led by the euro itself, anything with “dollar” in its name fell to the rear. The Aussie was not the biggest casualty but it lagged behind its Canadian and New Zealand cousins, losing-2% against the pound and -3% against the euro. The Australian economic data could not really be blamed. Retail sales were up by 0.3% in November, partially reversing the previous month’s -0.8% decline. November’s $1.9 billion trade surplus was very close to forecast. Home loans for that month were up by 2.5% while investment lending was down by almost exactly the same proportion.

Most important were the Australian employment data, particularly the figure for employment change in December. After unusually strong jobs growth of 54.6k in November the predicted 25k would have been anticlimactic on its own. The number announced on Thursday was even more of a disappointment at just 2.3k, as near to unchanged as makes no difference. The Aussie dollar had a mad half-hour, strengthening immediately ahead of the announcement and falling by a cent when the news came out, but the numbers had no lasting impact.

There is no particular focus in Australia this week. New vehicle sales will probably be -3.1% down in the year to December and consumer confidence will probably be lower after the Ashes series. For sterling the obstacles will be CPI inflation, employment, public sector borrowing and retail sales, all of which are important numbers. It is probably fair to assume the inflation data will be helpful but the others are in the lap of the gods. Buyers of the Australian dollar should continue to hedge their risk, fixing a price for half the money they need with a forward purchase.

Pomsinoz upgrade

Posted in: Forum News by Rob on 05/11/2010

Before the end of the year, we will be upgrading pomsinoz to the latest version of vbulletin (4.08). This a a major upgrade from it’s current version (3.8). The upgrade will bring several new features to the site including wiki style articles, an improved blog system, enhanced user profiles and better facebook integration. We’ll also be installing a choice of templates (colour schemes) so that users can select a favourite design. It is anticipated the upgrade will take place the last week in December.

Forums now on new server

Posted in: Forum News by Rob on

ServerAt the beginning of October, we migrated the forums from a rather aging server which was struggling to cope with the number of visitors that the forums now receive. The move was carried out over the weekend of 02/03 October and touch wood, all seems to be running smoothly. The old server was located in Sydney which was great for Australian visitors, but resulted in a slightly laggy feel for the UK members. To this effect, the new server is now based in the US, where access time from the UK & Australia should be broadly similar. The new server specs are below:

CPU: Intel Core i7 920 (2.66GHZ 8MB - HT - Triple Channel)
Primary Disk:Hardware Raid-10
4x73GB 15k RPM SAS 16MB Cache
Backup Drive: 500GB 7.2k RPM SATAII 16MB Cache
Public Port Speed : 1000Mbs Public
Public Bandwidth : 10TB Premium Transfer
Battery Back Up : Battery Backup Unit (BBU)
Chassis : Hot-Swappable SuperMicro Rackmount
Hardware RAID Controller : Adaptec 5405 PCIe - 1.2GHZ Dual Core - 256MB Cache

Victoria State Migration Plan

Posted in: Migration News by Rob on 03/11/2010

Tthe Victorian Government has announced that it now has a formal agreement with the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC), concerning the state sponsorship of skilled migrants to Victoria under the Skilled – Sponsored (176 and 886) and Skilled – Regional Sponsored (475 and 487) visas. This agreement is called the State Migration Plan (SMP).

As of the 03rd November, Applications for Victorian Government state sponsorship are now open under the State Migration Plan.

Under the agreement, the number of skilled migrants that the Victorian Government can sponsor against each occupation listed on the State Sponsorship Eligibility Lists is limited by a quota, and by an overall cap on the total number of applications that can be sponsored each year.

For 2010-11 Victoria’s cap is 4,500 visa grants, which includes primary and secondary applicants.

To inform you when the limit has been reached for an occupation, advice will be placed against the relevant occupation/s on the State Sponsorship Eligibility Lists stating that applications are not currently being accepted for that occupation.

Eligibility Lists –

  • State Sponsorship Eligibility List (498.2 kb)Last updated: 03 Nov 2010
    The Victorian Government State Sponsorship Eligibility list provides information on occupations eligible for consideration for state sponsorship under the Skilled-Sponsored (176) visa and the Skilled-Regional Sponsored (475 and 487) visa, including specialisations and requirements.
  • State Sponsorship Eligibility List for Graduates (264.8 kb)Last updated: 03 Nov 2010
    The Victorian Government State Sponsorship Eligibility List for Graduates provides information on occupations eligible for consideration for state sponsorship under the Skilled-Sponsored (886) visa, including specialisations and requirements.
Life in Victoria

Posted in: Blog by Rob on 19/09/2010

Melbourne Discussion ForumLifeinvictoria launched today. The new forum runs on vbulletin version4 and has been created for anyone who’s Melbourne/Victorora bound and for people already living there. Discuss all aspects of life in Victoria, Australia, including Education, careers, suburbs, eating out, the social scene and much more. In addition to the forums, the site also has a blog facility which members can use to document their move and subsequent life in Australia and we’ll also be developing a wiki style article system and a resources directory, listing useful services and business’s in Victoria.

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