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New Zealand’s Labour Party says migrants with special skills should be welcomed

New Zealand’s Labour Party will introduce moderate, sensible reforms to immigration to reduce the pressure on our cities, while ensuring we get the skilled workers our country needs, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.

New Zealand’S Labour Party Says Migrants With Special Skills Should Be Welcomed

“New Zealand is a country built on immigration. When new migrants come here, they enrich our country and make New Zealand a better place. We’ve always welcomed migrants to our country, and will continue to do so.”
Little added that “Immigration needs to be sustainable. We’ve always sought to manage immigration to match our economic needs with our capacity to cope with population growth. We reviewed the system from top to bottom and found that several areas were being abused and not delivering the results Kiwis expect.”

Little said that New Zealand should target skills shortages to regions. Improve regionalisation of skills shortage lists and should enforcement the Labour Market Test better which will make it easier for regions with genuine skills shortages to get the migrant workers they need.

“At the same, time Labour will make it easier for people with exceptional skills and talents to come to New Zealand with a new Exceptional Skills Visa. We’ll also create a KiwiBuild Visa specifically targeted at building tradespeople. The KiwiBuild Visa will allow building firms to bring in skilled workers as long as they also train the same number of New Zealanders and will be additional to construction work visas issued under existing rules.

“New Zealand is rightly proud of its immigrant communities and the contribution they make to our country. But we need to take a breather and get the balance right. Labour’s fresh approach will ensure the immigration system works for everyone,” says Andrew Little.

In May changes to the New Zealand work visa were announced and came into effect. In the first round of changes to the visa application requirements, would-be migrants will have to adhere to a new stricter point-system which includes:

• Being under 55 years-old - maximum 30 points awarded
• Skilled employment with 10 years + experience – maximum 90 points awarded
• Employed in future growth areas – maximum 35 points awarded if you have relevant experience
• Employed in are of Absolute Skills Shortage – maximum 35 points awarded if you have relevant experience
• Taking a position outside Auckland – score 30 points
• Recognized qualifications - add 60 points to your total if you hold a degree
• If you have close family who live in New Zealand another 10 points will be added to your total
• Your partner’ skills and qualifications will also count towards your points
• All visa holders must earn at least NZ$ 48,859 per year for a high-skilled visa and NZ$ 73,299 per year for a low-skilled visa
• Applicants must meet character and health requirements


Only migrants who have scored 160 – or more – points on their Expression of Interest will be invited to apply for the New Zealand work visa

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