Student visa scam should warn against contracting out
PSA MEDIA RELEASE
12th July 2012 - For Immediate Use
Chinese student visa scam should warn against further contracting out
The Public Service
Association says a student visa scam in China should serve
as a warning about the risks of contracting out important
It’s been revealed that hundreds of Chinese students received fraudulent visas through a company contracted by Immigration New Zealand to process visa applications in China.
PSA National Secretary Brenda Pilott says this is a clear failure of the contracting or outsourcing model.
Immigration New Zealand is now part of the new Business Innovation and Enterprise Ministry and is facing restructuring.
Brenda Pilott says “all government departments are under pressure to make savings in line with the government’s on-going austerity approach to public services, and MBIE is no exception.”
“We can’t afford to see these cost pressures resulting in further service outsourcing and contracting out because as this fraud case highlights, the risks can seriously outweigh the benefits. Any money Immigration New Zealand might have been saving by using contractors in China is now being used to investigate the fraud and track down the 231 students who are in New Zealand illegally,” she says.
The PSA says contracting out services is always going to carry risk in some countries and in this case it could jeopardise New Zealand’s multi-billion export education trade with China.
Brenda Pilott says there are some important lessons to be learned.
“The government and agencies should not view the contracting out of services as an easy cost cutting option, because as this case clearly shows, the price paid can actually be a lot higher.”
“The Minister of Labour
is saying everything must be done to maintain the reputation
and integrity of our systems – contracting out more
services is not the way to do it,” she says.