The lifetime ban will be put to parliament when it next sits, with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull saying it was necessary to send an "absolutely, unflinching, unequivocal message" that boatpeople will never be allowed in Australia.
"This is a battle of will between the Australian people, represented by its government, and the criminal gangs of people-smugglers," he said.
"You should not underestimate the scale of the threat. These people-smugglers are the worst criminals imaginable. They have a multibillion-dollar business.