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Immigration decisions positive, work still needed

Media release
5 December 2006


New immigration decisions broadly positive but work still needed

Business NZ welcomed the broad thrust of the Immigration Act review decisions announced today. Chief Executive Phil O’Reilly said they had the potential to streamline processes and improve efficiency.

“Employers will be disappointed that the review did not go further in allowing third parties, such as businesses, more involvement in immigration decisions, as such decisions are often pivotal for business skill needs. Third party involvement would have made the system more responsive and able to better and more quickly fill skill gaps.

“There is also the need to ensure that employers are not unduly burdened by compliance costs as a result of the review, particularly changes around what qualifies as 'reasonable' evidence employers can use to determine whether a foreigner is legally entitled to work. It will be important to ensure that any new processes for determining who can be hired are fair, transparent and easy to conduct.

"However the overall thrust of the Immigration Act decisions is positive. Skill shortages are a constraint on the ability of New Zealand businesses to grow, and a modern, well-functioning immigration system is a key means of ensuring that New Zealand can access the talent and expertise it needs to prosper.

"Business NZ is looking forward to the opportunity to work with the Minister and Immigration Service on defining new evidence requirements for employers and other issues.”

ENDS

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