02 November 2007

Intensifying skilled worker shortage drives up pay in New Zealand

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Analysts expect wage inflation in New Zealand to have grown in the September quarter due to very low unemployment and skills shortages, reports Bloomberg. Part of the problem is also falling New Zealand immigration, with new arrivals falling to a 19-month low in September, according to government statistics.

Private sector pay levels are predicted to be up 0.8 per cent, following a 0.7 per cent increase in the second quarter. This means that wages have risen a record-equalling 3.1 per cent compared to the previous year.

Bank of New Zealand senior markets economist Craig Ebert told Bloomberg: "Over the past 18 months, wage increases have started to show how tight the labor market is."

New Zealand Institute of Economic research revealed in September that 44 per cent of 456 companies surveyed were finding it more difficult to find skilled workers than earlier in the year. Workforce participation is so high that most people have a job who want one.

New Zealand needs skilled workers: Anyone applying for a New Zealand visa should begin by taking the New Zealand Visa Bureau's online New Zealand visa assessment to see if they meet the basic legislative requirements.

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