Immigration New Zealand announce plans for easier, faster visas

- Posted in New Zealand by Visa Bureauon 25 August 2011

Plans have been revealed by the New Zealand government to allow for skilled workers, students and visitors to acquire New Zealand visas in a quicker and easier way.

Speaking to members of the Queenstown business community yesterday, Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman outlined plans to attract immigrants and visitors to the country through measures he claimed would help cut bureaucracy, including faster processing of visas, simplified health and character checks for onshore applicants and approving multiple-entry visas for Chinese citizens, reflecting the growing contribution tourism from China brings to New Zealand.

Dr. Coleman said: “What we are really trying to do is take a sensible risk-based approach and see how much, in terms of process and bureaucracy, we can remove from the whole system".

The address was reported to have been received favourably, with Queenstown Resort College CEO Charlie Phillips commenting that he was impressive with the initiative, and Chamber of Commerce chairman Alistair Porter confirming that he felt “far less extensive health screening” would be helpful.

With unemployment at 6%, the Minister stressed that his department needed to ensure that migrants weren’t taking jobs New Zealanders could do, however he conceded that the speed at which work visas are processed needed to improve, pledging to reduce processing time to 20 days. At present, work visas in Queenstown are processed within 28 days, higher than the national target of 25 days for 90% of applications.

The New Zealand Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with New Zealand immigration applications.