Visa 188 - Business Innovation and Investment - Business Innovation Stream (provisional)

Please note that from 1 July 2020 all applications for State nomination must be lodged through our new online application system. Applications received by email or in hard copy after this date will not be processed.

Due to COVID-19 we are conducting all interviews with clients by telephone. Personal appointments will also be replaced by telephone interviews at the Western Australian Government Trade Office in Shanghai until further notice.

If you have an appointment with our staff, or intend to make one, please contact us on to arrange the appointment by telephone.

This visa is intended for people with a successful background as a business owner. Western Australian State nomination criteria includes:

  • you having a score of at least 65 on the Business Innovation and Investment points test

  • for two of the last four fiscal years you have held an ownership interest and directly managed up to two main businesses which had a minimum turnover of AUD$500,000 in each of those years

  • you have held an ownership interest in your business as follows:
    • 51 per cent, if the business has a turnover of less than AUD$400,000 per year
    • 30 per cent, if the business has a turnover of AUD$400,000 or more per year
    • 10 per cent, if the business is a publicly listed company

  • for your business proposal you must agree to have the following in Western Australia within two years of Department of Home Affairs visa grant:
    • total net assets (business and personal) of at least $900,000
    • net assets in business of at least $300,000
    • create employment for the equivalent of at least one new permanent full time staff member

  • you have not been engaged in a business where the provision of professional, technical or trade services took up more than 50 per cent of your time

  • you are less than 55 years of age, or you are proposing to participate in a business or investment activity which will be of exceptional economic benefit to the State (please refer to the State nomination guidelines)

Your proposed business must be a qualifying business activity. A qualifying business can be almost any commercial business activity as defined by the Department of Home Affairs:

  • A qualifying business means an enterprise that:
    (a) is operated for the purpose of making profit through the provision of goods, services or goods and services (other than the provision of rental property) to the public; and
    (b) is not operated primarily or substantially for the purpose of speculative or passive investment.

You must demonstrate how your qualifying business will make a contribution to the Western Australian economy. You must be responsible for the day to day management and overall strategic direction of your proposed business. You must also demonstrate that you understand the economic and commercial environment in Western Australia in which you will be operating your business.

If you are proposing to engage in export activity, you must demonstrate how your business will provide a direct contribution to the Western Australian (WA) economy through the:

  • export value of WA goods and services;
  • creation of new jobs or the retainment of existing jobs in WA;
  • contribution of the business to the local economy;
  • assistance provided to other WA businesses in exporting their WA products and services; and
  • expansion of export markets for WA products or services.

You will need to seek and be granted approval by the government of Western Australia before you can change your proposed business activity.

The majority of 188 Business Innovation and Investment – Business Innovation Stream visa holders will become eligible for permanent residence under the 888 Business Innovation and Investment visa – Business Innovation Stream once they have owned and managed a business* in Western Australia for at least two years and met the relevant criteria.

* You have not acquired the ownership in your main business (or two main businesses) from a person who was an applicant for, or a holder of, a permanent Business Innovation and Investment visa (subclass 888) or a permanent business skills visa (in subclasses 132, 890, 891, 892 or 893), unless you and that person had a joint interest in the main business for at least one year before you lodge your application for this visa (888).

Applicants who are proposing to go into business with an existing business migrant permanent residency holder must contact the Business Migration Centre for approval of their business proposal before lodging their State nomination application.

Either the primary or secondary applicant can apply for the Subclass 888 if the applicant meets the criteria for the 888.

You and any family member (dependants) residing in Australia are required to establish a residence and live and study in Western Australia.

How to apply

Lodge an online application for State nomination with the Business Migration Centre (BMC). A fee of $AUD750 applies to all visa nomination applications.

If  you are granted State nomination you can proceed to lodge an expression of interest (EOI) through SkillSelect. If you have not already done so.

Once nominated through SkillSelect by the BMC, you will receive an invitation from Department of Home Affairs to lodge your visa application which must be completed within 60 days using Department of Home Affairs electronic lodgement system.

If you do not submit your visa application within 60 days, your State nomination will no longer be valid. If you plan to continue with your visa application you will need to submit a new State nomination application and pay another application fee to the Business Migration Centre.

Please note, Western Australia receives only a limited number of nomination places from the Department of Home Affairs. We usually receive more applications than the number of places, and are therefore unable to offer State nomination to all qualifying applicants who lodge an application. Applicants who have previously been granted a State nomination will not receive a second nomination unless under exceptional circumstances

Visa 188 - Business Innovation and Investment - Business Innovation Stream - Extension

You may be able to extend your stay under an extension stream if you hold a visa under the Business Innovation stream and need extra time to meet the criteria for a permanent (subclass 888) visa.

Provisional visa holders in the Business Innovation stream can apply for one extension for an additional two years so your visa can last up to six years.

The criteria can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website.

Lodging your application for the visa or extension

Before proceeding please ensure you have read all the requirements of the 188 visa criteria at the Department of Home Affairs website. Where you can also find details of all Australian migration programs.

Once you start your application, you can save it as you progress and return to it later. If you are completing the application on behalf of someone else, please ensure you save the application before submitting it so the applicant can personally complete the Applicant Declaration.

You will be required to attach documents throughout the application, please ensure any documents not in English are translated, and a copy of both the original and translated versions are included. Please do not include any personal information such as birth certificates, tax file numbers etc.

Due to upload limitations, please only provide the relevant pages addressing the criteria and not the full document.

Link opens in a new window to the application form