New Zealand extends Seasonal Worker Permit programme: New Zealand Visa Bureau

- Posted in New Zealand by Visa Bureauon 18 September 2006

The pilot scheme, introduced in December 2005, allows visitors to the country to extend their stay to take up paid work in the horticulture and viticulture industries and relieve critical labour shortages.

Under the extended SWP policy:

  • Holders of current SWPs may be granted a new SWP extending their total time working in New Zealand on a SWP for a period not exceeding 9 months in any 12 month period.
  • Applicants who do not currently hold a SWP may be granted a SWP for a period not exceeding 6 months in any 12 month period.
  • Applicants from countries whose citizens do not require a visa to enter New Zealand must be on a valid temporary permit when they apply for a SWP.
  • Applicants from countries whose citizens require visas to enter New Zealand must have been lawfully in New Zealand on 15 September 2006, and continued to be lawfully in New Zealand up until the date of application for a SWP.
  • No SWP will be granted for a period beyond 30 September 2007.
As with the current policy, permits will only be granted for work in regions where the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) has declared an absolute labour shortage. Presently the MSD has declared shortages in:
  • Marlborough
  • Central Otago
  • Western Bay of Plenty.