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Victoria Expands its Subclass 190/491 Nomination Program to Include New Target Sectors – Are You Eligible to Apply?

This article was originally posted by Nicole Kirkwood, Director of Australian Visa and Immigration Experts (AVIE) and Registered Migration Agent (MARN: 0962323).

General Skilled Migration (GSM) is part of Australia’s skilled migration program. The skilled migration program allows people with in-demand skills to migrate to Australia without an employer sponsor.

Two of the most popular visa subclasses available in the General Skilled Migration program are the Subclass 190 Skilled Nominated and Subclass 491 Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visas. You can learn more about General Skilled Migration in Australia here.

Victoria has just announced changes to the program for subclass 190/491 visas for the 2021/2021 migration year. The subclass 190/491 program opens 7 July 2021 in Victoria. Here’s what you need to know.

What has changed for the subclass 190/491 visa?

Target sectors

Target sectors have now been increased to include:

  1. Health
  2. Medical research
  3. Life sciences
  4. Digital
  5. Agri-food
  6. Advanced manufacturing
  7. New energy, emissions reduction and circular economy

Eligibility requirements

Work experience requirements

Work experience requirements have changed. While you must be working in your occupation or a related occupation, there is now no minimum period you must be employed in Victoria in a related occupation.

You must be working in a regional area to be selected for Subclass 191 Permanent Residence (skilled regional) visa.

Registration of Interest process changes

You can now apply for an ROI anytime from 7 July 2021 – there are no more monthly rounds.

Does Victoria have an occupation list?

No, Victoria’s program is different to other states – they focus on industry sectors to select who they will nominate for subclass 190 and 491 visas.

What does Victoria mean by target sectors?

Victoria will consider most occupations for people who are working in the target sectors. These are:


You may be eligible if you are a professional providing medical service to Victorians, as well as those involved in related education, research and development.

You do not necessarily need to be working in a health occupation (e.g. as a nurse) to be considered working in the health sector. For example, a software developer working on software for hospitals is considered to be working in the health sector.

Nursing applicant must be one of the following occupations:

  • Midwife – 254111
  • Registered Nurse (Aged Care) – 254412
  • Registered Nurse (Critical Care and Emergency) – 254415
  • Registered Nurse (Mental Health) – 254422
  • Registered Nurse (Perioperative) – 254423
  • Registered Nurse (Paediatrics) – 254425

Medical research

You may be eligible if you conduct medical research conducted in universities and research institutes. Medical research includes activities such as drug development, clinical trials, health product manufacturing, medical devices and digital health.

If you are using your STEMM skills to support medical research in Victoria, you are considered to be working in the medical research sector.

 Life sciences

You may be eligible if you are working in life sciences such as medical technology, biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Companies involved in food processing, nutraceuticals and cosmeceuticals may also be considered to form part of the life sciences sector.

If you are using your STEMM skills to support Victoria’s life sciences sector, you are considered to be working in the life sciences sector. For example, a lecturer in biotechnology working in a university is considered to be working in life sciences.


You may be eligible if you are working in a digital sector that makes use of technology and innovation to drive economic growth, productivity and competitiveness in Victoria.

If your role involves digital skills but you are working in a different sector, you may be considered for another target sector.


You may be eligible under the agri-food sector if you are working to develop food growth and production, as well as the modernisation of Victoria’s agri-food sector. You must be using your STEMM skills to innovate within the sector, which could include research and development or advanced manufacturing.

Advanced manufacturing

You may be eligible if you are working in a manufacturing sector, including industries such as defence and aerospace. You must be using your STEMM skills to enhance innovation. This could include activities such as research and development, design, supply chain management, or increasing global competitiveness through the use of technology.

New energy, emissions reduction and circular economy

You may be eligible if you are working in industries such as clean energy, renewables, bioenergy, carbon capture and energy storage. You must be using your STEMM skills to support efforts to reduce waste, cut pollution and protect the environment.

Where to go for visa support

The Department of Home Affairs website is the first place you should seek information regarding visas in Australia. Alternatively, contact a Registered Migration Agent to have all your visa-related questions answered.