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Ozzie figures confirm seriousness of income gap

Lockwood Smith MP
National Party Immigration Spokesman

12 August 2006

Ozzie figures confirm seriousness of income gap

National Party Immigration spokesman Lockwood Smith says figures showing New Zealand has the biggest brain drain in the OECD should be a wake-up call to Labour.

“The figures are staggering, and they’re serious because these are the best people for our future. Many are educated and have the most to contribute to a vibrant and growing New Zealand.”

Dr Smith is referring to a report produced for the Australian Immigration Department which shows New Zealand has seen 32 per cent of its native-born skilled workforce move overseas.

According to the report’s author, the New Zealand figures are ‘arresting’ and it is particularly vulnerable to losing skilled workers across the Tasman.

“Labour might have put in place a ‘too little too late’ marketing programme to attract Kiwis back to New Zealand, but surely the first step is to improve the product that they’re selling.

“They might even stop some Kiwis leaving in the first pace,” says Dr Smith, who expects New Zealand may see a short-term upswing in arrivals in the aftermath of the terror plots uncovered in Britain.

“That happened after 9-11, but Labour did nothing to capitalise on the gains.”


ENDS

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