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NZ companies looking to Germany for skilled labour

MEDIA RELEASE

5 August 2005

For immediate release

NZ companies looking to Germany to find skilled labour

Regional development organisations, recruitment companies and the Department of Labour’s Immigration Service are joining a number of local employers who are heading to the inaugural German employment expo in search of skilled migrants.

Initiated and organised by the German Federal Employment Eervice, the expo will take place in Bonn and Berlin in mid October. It will help to alleviate the chronic skill shortage that is affecting many sectors of the NZ economy.

The German economy by contrast is struggling with economic restructuring, 5 million unemployed and high taxation, and faces a surplus of skilled labour, particularly in engineering, construction, industrial sectors and trades.

Matt Jones, Managing Director of recruitment company Canstaff knows the scenario only too well. Specialised in the construction, engineering and healthcare sectors, his team is finding it extremely difficult to find local talent for their clients. He explains, “We always try to recruit locally but given the sheer numbers involved we simply have to look overseas.”

He will go to Germany with over 90 vacancies. However, he remains cautiously optimistic about his prospects because he knows from experience that employment expos are proving a highly efficient tool for offshore recruitment.

Ross Stanway, CEO of the Western Bay of Plenty economic development organisation Priority One, says that a significant number of the 13,000 businesses in the region are suffering. He says there are “a number of key industries and businesses whose growth potential has been adversely affected by lack of skilled people.” While exact figures fluctuate, he is aware of hundreds of vacancies that are stifling local businesses.

Priority One will be actively promoting the Western Bay of Plenty at the expo and hope to build up a solid database of potential skilled migrants from Germany.

Stanway too likes the concept of an employment expo. “It’s a part of the solution in addressing the skill shortage,” he explains.

The employment expo will be opened by the NZ ambassador to Germany and aims to be a one-stop-shop where potential migrants can find relevant information about working and living in New Zealand. Presentations by the Immigration Service about work visa and permanent residence requirements will be supplemented with specific seminars and trade display-type information from participating employers and their representatives.

About the German Employment Expo
The expo will be held on the 10th and 12th October in Bonn and Potsdam and is promoted in New Zealand by Immigration Placement Services.

Organised by the Central Placement Office (Zentralstelle für Arbeitsvermittlung, ZAV) of the German Federal Employment Service, the expo will be staged at the GSI Conference Centre in Bonn and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Potsdam respectively.

Visitors will be able to attend a range of seminars by NZIS and other organisations covering various aspects of living and working in New Zealand, regulatory requirements (work visas, permanent residence) as well as impact on retirement schemes and social security plans for Germans living abroad.

The Expo will be widely advertised through the German Federal Government's employment service (ZAV) channels and its extensive database including direct marketing to prospective skilled migrants in industries that will be represented at the Expo. This will ensure a highly targeted audience with extensive potential to boost the NZ workforce.

ENDS

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