Friday, May 24, 2024

New Zealand tightens visa rules amid ‘unsustainable’ migration – N.F Times


New Zealand: New Zealand has tightened work visa rules in response to “unsustainable” migration levels, say authorities.

Low-skilled applicants now have to fulfil English-language requirements and are allowed to stay on for three years – down from five previously.

“Getting our immigration settings right is critical to this government’s plan to rebuild the economy,” said Immigration Minister Erica Stanford.

A near-record 173,000 people migrated to New Zealand last year.

Under the tightened rules, applicants for most work visas now have to fulfill minimum skills and work experience requirements.

Authorities have also decided to axe earlier plans to add 11 roles, such as welders, fitters and turners, to the list of occupations that would qualify for a fast-track to residency.

Employers are responsible for ensuring that migrants meet the specified qualifications and skill requirements before giving them a job.

These rules mark “the start of a more comprehensive work programme to create a smarter immigration system,” Ms Stanford said, adding that more stringent visa rules also help prevent the exploitation of migrant workers.

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