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Chamber helping migrant professionals into work

Auckland Chamber of Commerce key to helping migrant professionals into employment

The employment prospects of professionally qualified migrants are being significantly boosted as a result of a cooperative programme between Work and Income and the Auckland Chamber of Commerce.

Associate Social Development and Employment Minister Rick Barker said the Migrant Work Experience Programme, now in its second year, had so far attracted 200 participants.

"Over half of those have now been placed in employment relevant to their profession and I'd like to record my appreciation for the Chamber's involvement in achieving that and helping meet some of Auckland's skills shortages."

Mr Barker said the Chamber's role in the programme opened up opportunities for migrants to gain work experience in the New Zealand context.

"Prospective employers get a better understanding of a migrant's abilities, creating a situation more likely to lead to a successful outcome.

"The programme has been so successful that in the last week the Chamber has been approached by 40 new employers interested in the scheme."

The Chamber of Commerce aims to find four to eight weeks work experience for each participant in their field of expertise (eg: engineering, IT, accounting), allowing migrants to gain practical work experience and network with potential employers.

"A key to the success of this programme is the reality that the Chamber can do some things better than Work and Income, so a joint effort by the two makes sense.

"The Chamber gets good skilled staff and Work and Income is able to offer migrants an opportunity to gain work experience and, hopefully, employment that also meets their expectations," Mr Barker said.

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