05 May 2006

Migrants get New Zealand business approval

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New Zealand employers have given their backing to migrant workers after a survey found most believed their immigrant staff added valuable to their business.

The nationwide survey of 804 major employers found that 81% rated the job performance of migrant employees as good or very good.

The results are good news the New Zealand Goverment who are looking to attract more skilled migrants to the country to alleviate the skills shortage and maintain population growth, which has only recently shown growth of 1% per annum.

A survey by accountants Grant Thornton last year found that 50 per cent of business owners in New Zealand said the availability of a skilled workforce is a major constraint.

Latest Goverment statistics put the skills shortage at 33% for the last reported quarter ending in December, which is considerably better than the previous quarter's figures of 43%, but the lack of skilled labour is still a major concern for New Zealand business.

New Zealand has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the developed world at just 3.6%, although as the New Zealand economy continues to slow, this is expected to rise to just over 4% - still well below that of the United Kingdom (5.1%), whose nationals account for over 30% of New Zealand immigrants.

Anyone who is interested in emigrating to New Zealand should visit the New Zealand Visa Bureau web site and complete the Online Assessment to see if they meet the basic requirements.


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