CNA – New Zealand will make temporary changes to immigration rules, a minister said yesterday, aiming to lure 12,000 workers over the next year with a working holiday scheme designed to fill labour gaps as businesses scramble to find staff.
The jostling for workers is part of a global trend that has helped push up wages in New Zealand, posing a challenge to the fight on inflation by the central bank, which raised interest rates last week to their highest since 2015.
“These measures are about providing immediate relief to those businesses hardest hit by the global worker shortage,” Immigration Minister Michael Wood said in a statement, adding that the holiday scheme targetted a doubling of intake.
Other steps include a relaxation of wage rules for skilled migrants in sectors such as care of the aged, construction and infrastructure, meat processing, seafood, and adventure tourism.
The visas of some onshore working holidaymakers will also be extended by six months to retain workers now in the country, Wood added.