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Work Permits – International students

21 April 2005

Work Permits – International students

The New Zealand Federation of Ethnic Councils is delighted with the new moves the Government is introducing regarding international students.

Students currently find it difficult to find work without a work permit, and therefore cannot contribute to New Zealand in the way they would like. When they come to study in New Zealand, they not only want to gain qualifications, but they also want to experience the kiwi way of life and to contribute constructively to our society. They were finding this difficult as they could not obtain a work permit without work, and employers were not keen to offer work until a work permit was granted. “It is a chicken and egg situation”. Says Mr Narayanan “This new regime takes away this chicken and egg situation”.

This new policy allows students to become part of our society, use their new skills for their benefit and the benefit of the Country and enables their partners to work and contribute to New Zealand’s economy. “It is a comprehensive package, that is way overdue” says Mr Narayanan.

Increasing the number of hours they can work whilst studying from 15 hours to 20 hours will help fund their studies, assist in their use of English, and support them in their settlement into Aotearoa/New Zealand.

This is in fact a timely endeavour. It will provide a bigger pool of employable people to relief the pressure put upon empoyers to find good staff to fill roles during this period of a generally low level of unemployment.

The Federation of Ethnic Councils will monitor this new policy to determine the impact on students.

“I doubt if it will take away jobs from New Zealanders” says Mr Narayanan.


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