28 August 2007

Shortage of skilled workers in New Zealand continues

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Skill shortages in New Zealand remain high and will be a long-term feature of the labour market, according to the latest report released by the Department of Labour.

Deputy secretary for work directions Monique Dawson said: "Skill shortages are an inevitable consequence of strong economic growth."

The Skills in the Labour Market report shows the working-age population grew by only 0.2 per cent in the June 2007 quarter. This is the lowest quarterly result for nearly two years.

Net migration is also falling (from 14,800 in the year to November 2006 to 10,100 in the year to June 2007). That means employers have a smaller pool of people available to recruit from.

One clear way to address this problem is attracting skilled people to apply for a New Zealand visa. Immigration Minister David Cunliffe recently said that "with the economy strong and New Zealand competing in a global market for skilled migrants, our top priority at present is ensuring we get high quality migrants while not adding to inflationary pressures".

The report is based on information in the Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion from the Institute of Economic Research and the Department of Labour's Job Vacancy Monitoring Programme.

New Zealand needs skilled immigrants: anyone interested in New Zealand immigration should complete the New Zealand Visa Bureau's online New Zealand visa assessment to see if they qualify for a New Zealand visa.

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