What is a subclass 188E visa?

Subclass 188E visa for people who have an exceptional business concept that is funded by a third party to undertake complying entrepreneur activity. This concept is proposed to lead to either the commercialization of a product or service in Australia or the development of a business in Australia.


subclass 188e visa


The applicants and their family members can apply for a permanent resident subclass 888 visa if they meet the requirements.


The benefits of the subclass 188E visa

When the Australian Government grants applicants a subclass 188E visa, not only they but also their accompanying family members will enjoy the full benefits of the visa:

Benefits Details
Residence Staying in Australia for up to 5 years.
Including family member The applicant can include their eligible family members to come to Australia and enjoy the same benefits.
Social security Applicant’s family members can be entitled to full benefits from Australia’s social security policy.
Education and working Can work and study in Australia.
Multiple entries Being able to travel in and out Australia while the visa is valid.


visa 188e australia


Advantages of the subclass 188E visa

Significant advantages of this visa stream:

  • Financial capacity is not required.
  • Migration point of 65 is not required.


The requirements of the subclass 188E visa

The requirements of the subclass 188E visa (stage 1)

Primary applicant must:


Requirements Details
Age Be under 55 at the time of the invitation to apply for the visa.
Be nominated Applicants must be nominated by an Australian State before being invited to apply for this visa.
Business ideas A complying entrepreneur activity must relate to an innovative idea that will lead to:

  • The commercialization of a product or service in Australia, or
  • The development of an enterprise or business in Australia.

This activity must not relate to any of the following categories:

  • Residential real estate.
  • Labor hire.
  • Purchase of an existing enterprise or a franchise in Australia.
Business capital The applicant must have one or more legally enforceable agreements to receive funding with a total of at least 200,000 AUD.

The funding must be from one of the following entities:

  • Commonwealth Government agency.
  • State or Territory government agency.
  • Publicly funded research or innovation organization.
  • Higher education provider specified as a Table A or Table B provider under Part 2-1 of the Higher Education Support Act 2003.
  • Investor registered as an Australian Venture Capital Limited Partnership or Early Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnership.

At least 10% of the funding must be payable to the entrepreneurial entity within 12 months of the activity starting in Australia.

Ownership of at least 30% in the joint venture.

English At least competent English (IELTS 6 or equivalent English test result)
Health Must meet the health requirements of the Australian Government.
Criminal Records Applicants and partners have no history of illegal business or investment in Australia.

Have no debt to the Australian Government. If so, applicants must have paid it back or have an approved arrangement to pay it back.

Have no criminal background.


The requirements of subclass 888E visa (stage 2)


Requirements Details
Length of stay Applicants must have been in Australia for at least 2 of 3 years (or 2 of 4 years previously)
Be nominated

The applicant must be nominated by a State or Territory government agency.

A successful record of entrepreneurial activities To apply for this subclass 888E visa, the applicant needs to show either:

  • 2 key success factors, or
  • 1 key success factor and 3 supporting success factors.

Key success factors:

  • Employing 2 or more Australians, permanent residents or other eligible persons.
  • Generating an annual turnover of at least 300, 000 AUD.
  • Filing a provisional patent or acquiring a standard or innovation patent.
  • Receiving ongoing funding or investment in entrepreneur activity.
  • Entering into a partnership with a university.
  • Selling an entrepreneurial venture for 2 million AUD.

Supporting success factors:

  • Adapting your entrepreneurial activities into other business areas.
  • Receiving a statement of success from a state or territory government nominator.
  • Receiving sponsorship from the corporate sector.
  • Starting at least 1 other business or contributing to at least 2 other businesses.
  • Receiving formal awards or recognition.
  • Raising or contributing to social capital.
Judicial Records
  • Have fulfilled the obligations of the subclass 188E visa.
  • Have followed Australian laws.
  • Have no debt to the Australian government.

Step-by-step of the subclass 188E visa

Step 1: Assessing the applicant’s ability to qualify for this visa and preparing documents.
Step 2: Submitting the Expression of Interest (EOI).
Step 3: Be nominated by a State or Territory, and then be invited to apply.
Step 4: Applying for the visa and paying the application fee.
Step 5: Additional documents.
Step 6: The subclass 188E visa is granted.


australia visa subclass 188e


What must prepare for the subclass 188E visa documents

The applicant must provide the following documents with the main application:

Documents Details
Identification papers
  • ID photos. (in the last 6 months).
  • Certified copies of the applicant’s passport.
  • Certified copies of applicants’ ID cards.
  • Certified copies of the applicant’s birth certificate.
  • Marriage certificate (if any).
  • Proof of change of name, if applicable.
Business documents
  • Prove that the enterprise receives investment from the organization that meets the conditions.
  • A business plan of the enterprise.
  • Prove that applicant has ownership of the business.
English At least IELTS 6, or an equivalent test result.
Health and character Must meet the health and character requirements of the Australian Government.
Documents for accompanying person (if any)
  • Identification papers.
  • Proof of his/her eligibility.
  • Proof of the relationship with the main applicant.


The cost of the subclass 188E visa

In the group of 4 Australian investment and temporary business visas, the subclass 188E visa fee is the lowest.

Visa application charge installments Visa costs

(not including 1.4% surcharge)

Main applicants

Additional applicants
Over 18 years old Under 18 years old
First installment: the time of lodging a visa application. 6,395 AUD 3,195 AUD 1,600 AUD


Any kind of refund is impossible when the application is rejected. Additionally, when a visa is refused, there is not only financial lose, but time and especially opportunities for your whole family!


The processing times of a subclass 188E visa


Processing times
75% of applications Not available
90% of applications Not available


Obligations of a subclass 188B visa

The applicant must fulfill the requirement when holding this visa to be able to apply for permanent residence visa – Subclass 888E. During the subclass 188E visa holding period, the applicants must fulfill the following obligations:

  • Keeping a minimum of 30% of the enterprise shares.
  • Meeting the requirements of the 888E visa – stage 2 (mentioned in part 4 of the article).

Susan Le – VEM’s customer who is granted the subclass 188A visa – shared some useful information regarding a successful visa application for your reference.


VEM’s customer who is granted the subclass 188A visa


Frequently asked questions

Do I need to submit an EOI application before applying for the subclass 188E visa?

  • You must send an EO I and be nominated by the State or Territory Government to apply for the visa.

Does the subclass 188E visa require applicants to meet the age requirement?

  • The applicant must be under the age of 55 at the time of invitation.

What industry does my company have to do in order to apply for this visa?

  • Your business needs to operate in the right field for the visa requirement. You can review part 4 of the article for complete information.

When applying for the subclass 188E visa, do I have to provide a business plans?

  • Yes. You also have to describe in detail and persuasively in order to receive funding and be nominated.


Can my family members apply together with me for this subclass 188E visa?

Of course yes, as long as the person who applies for the visa must be an eligible family member.

Where do I apply for the subclass 188E visa?

Depending on your actual circumstances, you can apply for the visa onshore or offshore!

Can the subclass 188E visa be extended?

No, there is no extension for this visa.

What do I have to do to be nominated by a state or territory in Australia for this?

You need to meet the requirements of this visa (section 4).

Contact VEM to have a consultation session with our qualified migration specialist to find out whether you meet the requirements for the visa.

VEM’s qualified migration specialist may advise you on the best migration pathway for you and accompany you through the whole visa journey!



Lots of entrepreneurs/investors apply for this subclass 188A visa this year. You should complete and submit the application as soon as possible. If you need help from our licensed migration specialist – Mr. Phong Cao, contact VEM now! Moreover, we have a preferential program for this investment visa!


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Article