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New Zealand’s labour force would be in trouble without migrant labour

Leader of New Zealand First, Winston Peters, suggested annual immigration should be capped at no less than 7000 migrants but that 15,000 "seriously" qualified migrants are needed.

New Zealand’S Labour Force Would Be In Trouble Without Migrant Labour

A recent Treasury paper said migrants helped the economy by providing complementary skills and filling skill gaps. This claim is endorsed by industries relying on migrant workers to fill jobs Kiwis don't want or lack the skills to do reported recently.


The 15th annual Migration Trends and Outlook report released late last year showed more than 170,000 people were granted work visas, a rise of 10 per cent.

Visas were issued to 28,548 essential skills workers which is an increase of eight per cent from the previous year. quoted the report in saying that this increase was the third consecutive increase since the start of the global financial crisis, reflecting the strong demand for labour in New Zealand.

Hospitality New Zealand(HNZ) general manager of operations and advocacy Tracy Scott said to that with the growth in tourism, vacancies were increasingly filled by temporary migrant workers.

"Sometimes it comes down to Kiwis just not wanting to do that kind of work. It's hard work with odd hours and it suits people who are passing through on holiday."

HNZ is pushing to have cafe and restaurant managers included on the essential skills list and Scott said it was estimated more than 1100 new experienced managers were needed annually.

According to the HNZ of their 3000 members 76 per cent had recruited, or tried to recruit a manager, over the last year.

A third took more than six months to fill the vacancy, and only one per cent of those who tried to recruit managers through Work and Income found someone suitable.

Federated Farmers dairy chair Andrew Hoggard said in an interview with he would be concerned if the supply of migrant workers was cut back as a ‘knee jerk' reaction to the housing problem in Auckland.

Turbo Staff recruits for the construction industry and managing director Ihaka Rongonui said he too relied heavily on migrant workers for construction projects in and near Christchurch.

With the city's commercial rebuild ramping up, demand was such that he could place a further 100 migrants.


Master Builders chief executive David Kelly said migrant workers were also helping fill vacancies in areas such as Auckland, Waikato, and Bay of Plenty.

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