19 July 2024

New direct pathway to citizenship for Kiwis living in Australia

Australia has decided to provide a new direct pathway to citizenship for New Zealanders living in Australia.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese made the announcement this morning during New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins visit over there this weekend.

This historical decision comes in the 50th anniversary year of the trans-Tasman travel arrangement, which allows each country’s people to live and work in the other country.

Citizenship for Kiwis
New pathway comes into effect on 1 July, 2023

Chris Hipkins has welcomed Australia’s decision saying it will bring the two countries closer together.

The announcement delivers on Prime Minister Albanese’s commitment that no New Zealander should be left ‘permanently temporary’ in Australia.

Chris Hipkins acknowledge and thanked Prime Minister Albanese for his “instrumental role in prioritising these improvements.”

“This is the biggest improvement in the rights of New Zealanders living in Australia in a generation and restores most of the rights Kiwis had in Australia before they were revoked in 2001″, Prime Minister Hipkins said.

“Today’s announcement brings our nations closer together. It underscores the strength and breadth of the bonds between our countries ahead of my visit this weekend.

“These changes will make a real and meaningful difference to the lives of many New Zealanders and their children by giving those who decide to take up Australian citizenship similar rights to Australians living in New Zealand.

“Kiwis taking up Australian citizenship will still retain their New Zealand citizenship. These dual citizens are not lost to New Zealand – but draw us closer together.”

“It will apply to Kiwis on temporary, special category, visas who have arrived since 2001 and lived in Australia for four years and meet the standard criteria for citizenship including character checks and intention to reside in Australia.

“Children born in Australia since 1 July 2022 to a New Zealand parent living there will also automatically be entitled to citizenship. This will make critical services available to them,”

Highlights:

  • Rights come into effect on 1 July, 2023
  • Applies to Kiwis on temporary, special category, visas who have lived in Australia for four years, and meet the standard Australian citizenship criteria
  • Kiwis taking up Australian citizenship will still retain their NZ citizenship
  • Retrospective: Those in Australia since 2001 will be able to apply directly for citizenship without gaining permanent residence first
  • Gives Kiwis access to services and benefits, once they become citizens
  • Allows Kiwi children born in Australia to become citizens at birth
  • Applies to New Zealand citizens, including New Zealand citizens from the states and territories within the Realm of NZ
  • fee is A$490
  • No minimum income requirement or health requirement

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