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Regional focus on skills shortages

Skills shortages lists are now more regionalised so we can build thriving and sustainable regions, says Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway who announces the new lists today.

“We are supporting our regions to thrive by focussing more on what skills are needed in their specific region with our new listings,” says Iain Lees-Galloway.

“Under the Essential Skills in Demand programme, we’ve changed the Immediate Skills Shortage List to the Regional Skill Shortage Lists and expanded the number of regions from six to 15. This shows us which skills are needed in which region and shows New Zealanders and temporary migrants where their opportunities are for work in provincial New Zealand.

“These changes to the Essential Skills in Demand lists are the first step in the Government’s plan to streamline and regionalise the skills-based visa system and require industries that benefit to invest in and provide opportunities for Kiwi workers.

“Three teaching roles – early childhood, primary and secondary school teachers – have been added to all regions on the Regional Skill Shortage List. Adding these vital education sector positions to the lists will help us support the education sector, which is experiencing a teacher shortage.”

Aged Care nurses have been added to the Long Term Skill Shortage List, Building Associate has been added to the Construction Skills Shortage list, while three other occupations have been amended to better reflect the nature of the shortage or deal with duplications. No occupations have been removed from the Lists completely.

“These proposals simplify the number of different visa options, respond to sectoral or regional differences in the labour market, and align the immigration system with the education, skills and welfare systems,” says Iain Lees-Galloway.

Key changes announced today are:
• The Regional Skill Shortage Lists are replacing the Immediate Skill Shortage List, and the number of regions is expanding from six to 15
• Three occupations (Early Childhood, Primary School and Secondary School Teacher) are being added to the new Regional Skill Shortage List
• Aged Care Nurses is being added to the Long Term Skill Shortage List
• Building Associate is being added to the Construction and Infrastructure Skill Shortage List

The latest changes are detailed on the INZ website here. The revised lists will come into effect in this month.

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