Since the New Zealand borders reopened after two years on 1st August 2022, Immigration New Zealand (INZ) has been flooded with Visa applications. These applications are from partners and relatives looking to join their loved ones, students wanting to study on campus, skilled migrants wishing to work onshore, Working Holiday Visa holders and tourists wanting to holiday in scenic New Zealand. The New Zealand government is trying to remain attractive and competitive in the global market, where skilled workers and high-quality students have multiple choices. Only time will tell how successful they will be. All one can say at this stage is that they need to be fleet-footed, practical, and non-bureaucratic and connect with the stakeholders on multiple platforms to remain relevant in this changing world. The government is taking various steps to plug the skills gaps.
International students who used to be huge revenue generators and a temporary workforce for NZ can now apply for a visa to study on campus. However, of late, the student visa decisions have been erratic and inconsistent. The underlying factor is the country-specific indicators INZ visa officers seem to use to assess bona fides. In addition, due to the closure of certain offshore offices of INZ, student visa applications lodged offshore are being processed in New Zealand for the first time in the last decade on such a huge scale. The sector is abuzz with whispers that obsolete market intelligence, out-of-date country-specific risk indicators, and other archaic factors are fast eroding the image of INZ among international students and their agents. The general impression is that while New Zealand chose to be isolated, the world has galloped past. It is time to respect the changing world dynamics, understand international students' global mindset, and embrace the "New".
New Zealand offers internationally recognised qualifications and is one of the best study-abroad destinations in the world.
INZ, as part of its rebalance strategy, has increased the fund's requirement for international students, in addition to changing post-study work visa rights. How it plays out in various student recruitment markets is yet to be seen.
Meanwhile, partners and dependents of work visa holders can now look forward to applying for a partnership-based visa to join their loved ones in New Zealand. If you are interested in a partnership-based visa, please provide your information by clicking here, and we will help you out.
The Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) opened to applicants last month. NZ employers need to get a Job Check done to hire migrant workers. Advertising for job vacancies to hire the right people is also an essential aspect of this process. I have included interesting articles about how to advertise for a job successfully and how to do a successful Job Check in this newsletter.
In addition to the above, when hiring migrants on an AEWV, employers must be aware of exceptions to the median wage threshold as mentioned in our blog.
Senior Licensed Immigration Adviser