Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Rural Contractors ask for similar seasonal worker deal

Media Release

24 July 2014

Rural Contractors New Zealand is welcoming news that Government’s plans to encourage more New Zealanders into seasonal work and also its decision to increase the annual Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) cap to a total of 9000 workers.

RCNZ President, Steve Levet says this boost to seasonal workers is essential in delivering the horticulture industry’s forecasted future growth, but suggests a similar scheme is also needed in the rural contracting sector.

“There is no doubt the horticulture sector is an important and valuable part of New Zealand’s economy and the Government is right to make provisions for that sector,” he says.

“However, we need similar provisions for the rural contracting sector as there is a gap between rural contractors’ needs for trained, agricultural machinery operators and unemployed New Zealanders who can do this work.”

Mr Levet believes the rules around employing temporary, skilled people from overseas prepared to work for 6-8 months each year need to be simplified as do the regulations restricting people who have previously worked here in past seasons coming back to New Zealand to work.

“Contracting is a seasonal business and one that uses sophisticated machinery that requires technical skill to operate productively,” he adds. “Part of this shortfall is met by bringing in skilled operators from overseas.”

Mr Levet says political parties of all persuasions need to understand that a dire shortage of suitable agricultural machinery operators means rural contractors rely on employing skilled people from overseas on a temporary basis each season and have done so for many years.

He adds that many of the applicants Work and Income NZ (WINZ) tries to fill these vacancies with; either do not have the right skill-set and/or attitude to be successful.

“We are talking about operating highly technical and very expensive pieces machinery. It is unrealistic, unsafe and impractical to expect unemployed people to walk off the street and successfully take up these positions.”

“The seasonal nature of rural contracting means workers with the right skills are needed for only a few months each year. Understandably, this kind of short-term employment does not often suit locals who are looking for fulltime work.”

Mr Levet says RCNZ will continue to work closely with the Government, political parties and officials too both ensure that locals have the best opportunity for employment, as well as continuing to lobby for changes to the rules around engaging overseas seasonal workers for the benefit of the rural contracting sector.

[Ends]


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Auckland Transport Case: Men Guilty Of Corruption And Bribery Will Spend Time In Jail

Two men who were found guilty of corruption and bribery in a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) trial have been sentenced in the Auckland High Court today... The pair are guilty of corruption and bribery offences relating to more than $1 million of bribes which took place between 2005 and 2013 at Rodney District Council and Auckland Transport. More>>

ALSO:

Hager Raid: Westpac Wrong To Release Bank Records To Police

The Privacy Commissioner has censured Westpac Banking Corp for releasing without a court order more than 10 months of bank records belonging to the political activist and journalist Nicky Hager during a police investigation into leaked information published in Hager's 2014 pre-election book, 'Dirty Politics'. More>>

ALSO:

EARLIER:

Crown Accounts: Government Ekes Out Six-Month Surplus Of $9M

The New Zealand government eked out a tiny surplus in the first six months of the fiscal year as growth in domestic consumption lifted the goods and services tax take, while uncertainties over the Kaikoura earthquake costs meant expenses were less than expected. More>>

ALSO:

Almost 400 Jobs: Shock At Cadbury's Dunedin Factory Closure

Workers at Cadbury in Dunedin are reeling after learning this morning that the iconic Cadbury factory is to close, with the loss of almost 400 jobs... “The company had reported it was doing well and this has come out of the blue,” says Chas. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news