16 June 2009

Dairy farmers needed to work in New Zealand

Lobbying from Federated Farmers has ensured that migrants can continue to work in New Zealand in the dairy farming industry.

In the lead-up to the biannual review of the Immediate Skills Shortage List (ISSL), dairy farmers lobbied to have dairy farming skilled positions listed on the ISSL so that migrants could work in New Zealand in that industry.

According to a press release from Federated Farmers, dairy farms are in desperate need of overseas skilled workers to work in New Zealand because of an ageing and retiring workforce and local people leaving the industry.  Frank Brenmuhl, a spokesperson for Federated Farmers Employment, said that over 4,000 people will be needed to work in New Zealand to cover the increasing shortage in the industry.

Around 1,300 New Zealand visa holders from places diverse as Africa and Chile work on the New Zealand dairy farms - most of whom have been living in New Zealand for many years and know the sector well.

"Despite it paying extremely well, we don’t have young New Zealanders entering the dairy sector. If the Assistant Herd Manager and Assistant Farm Manager categories were cancelled, it would have compromised exports," Brenmuhl said.

"As we cannot recruit enough talent locally, we need skilled migrant workers."

The biannual review into the Immediate Skills Shortage List (ISSL) resulted in 44 occupations being removed; however, employers will still be able to source overseas workers for those occupations removed from the ISSL, so long as those employers prove to the New Zealand immigration authorities that they have exhausted the local New Zealand labour market first.  New Zealand immigration authorities are adamantly testing the local labour market before granting any New Zealand work permit to overseas workers.

If you are thinking of finding work in New Zealand, take the free online assessment test to see if you are eligible for a New Zealand work permit, and a Visa Bureau qualified migration agent will be able to help you with your New Zealand visa application.


The New Zealand Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their New Zealand visa application.


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