Australia ramping up visa refusal rates

·1-min read

Australia has ramped up visa refusals with the equivalent of 145,000 people knocked back in one year as bureaucrats cracked down on fraud.

Home Affairs secretary Michael Pezzullo said the refusal rate rose from 2.5 per cent in 2015/16 to 4.5 per cent in 2019/20.

He told a Senate estimates hearing the increase was significant and indicated the department was doing an improved job detecting risk and fraud.

"Had we maintained our earlier less-effective efforts then the number of additional visas would have been over 145,000 in 19/20 alone," Mr Pezzullo said.

Officials also gave an update on a program which resettles refugees in the United States with the latest data from about a week ago showing 929 people had been transferred to America.

More than 419 have been sent from Papua New Guinea, 391 from Nauru and 119 from Australia.

About 265 people including 240 currently in Australia have been provisionally approved for resettlement.