Immigration jobs and housing

Written By: - Date published: 12:46 pm, August 11th, 2016 - 88 comments
Categories: class war, economy, im/migration - Tags: , , , ,

Immigration has been in the news recently for all sorts of reasons. Let’s start with the Reserve Bank call last month:

Housing crisis: Reserve Bank calls on Government to curb immigration

The Reserve Bank has told the Government to review immigration policy in a bid to stem rising house prices.

In an unusually direct comment on immigration policy, Spencer told the Government to review the number of people moving to New Zealand, as the impact of high net migration on housing could not be ignored.

Record net migration was a key driver to surging housing demand, he warned. “Like taxation of investor-owned housing, migration policy is a complex and controversial issue,” Spencer said.

“However, we cannot ignore that the 160,000 net inflow of permanent and long-term migrants over the last three years has generated an unprecedented increase in the population and a significant boost to housing demand.” …

See also: Reserve bank: Migration key to housing crisis.

Today on RNZ:

NZ visa numbers reach ‘staggering’ record high

More people have been approved to work in New Zealand in the last year than in any other on record.

(About 800 new residents are settling in Auckland each week, the city’s chamber of commerce says.)

More than 200,000 people were issued temporary work visas in the year ending June, almost 30,000 more than the year before. The number of new residents rose 20 percent over the same period to 52,000. A demographer, Paul Spoonley, said the numbers were staggering and it was not clear whether there was any sign of a slowdown in the number of arrivals, or of the government putting the brakes on.

Professor Spoonley, the pro-vice chancellor of the college of humanities and social sciences at Massey University, said New Zealand now had the highest inflow of workers and new residents of any OECD country. “The thing that surprises me is that month on month, and year on year, the numbers of visas given to both residents and temporary workers is continuing to increase, as it is with students. “So there is an important question about when we begin to tail off, either in terms of the numbers of people applying or the government says enough is enough.” …

The Nats and others would have us believe that this rate of immigration is necessary because employers can’t find skilled workers, but with unemployment at 5.2% surely our first priority should be training our own workforce. For an alternative account of why high immigration suits some, see Bernard Hickey: Migrants can keep wages down, and We need doctors, not bar staff.

So call me a cynic, but I think the Nats like high immigration because it helps keeps wages down, it gives the illusion of economic growth (also), and because they don’t much care about the contribution to housing and infrastructure overload.

The knee-jerk response to calls to limit immigration is accusations of racism. Difficult to play that card now that concerns are being raised by a broad spectrum, from economists, the Reserve Bank, political parties, and around 60% of the public. So, until we sort out our housing and unemployment problems it is surely time to reign in NZ’s currently record levels of immigration.

88 comments on “Immigration jobs and housing”

  1. r0b 1

    Perhaps not wise of me to put this up when I now have to disappear for a couple of hours. Fellow moderators are invited to keep an eye out an nip any racist nonsense in the bud.

    • Unicus 1.1

      Micheal Barnett from tha ACC has suggested in the NZ Herald better liaison between buisiness and government to control current immigration anarchy . but that cosy little arrangement has been the problem from the start – buisiness telling government what it wants and to hell with the social consequences .

      Immigration is bleeding New Zealand’s culture to extinction – talk about diversity all you like but its real effect- with globalisation – has been the dimunition of the historic norms and values of honest work for a modest standard of living for all

      There is far more at stake than just the interests of buisiness and the dodgy economic strategies of the National party there must be a fulsome public discussion without party political agendas or self interested commercialist pressure about the social and cultural future of New Zealand – and soon !

  2. Rosie 2

    Thanks for raising the problem, because let’s be honest it has become a problem. (where do you put 800 new residents in a city each week?) It’s a thorny topic because it can so easily and quickly stray into hate territory and leave the realm of fact and measurable consequence.

    We need to get our own house in order, repair damage to our economy and our society (employment, housing crisis and reduced access to public health as funding is not keeping up with increasing population) become stable and secure, and then throw out the welcome mat to appropriate migrants. We can do this and still welcome an increased number of refugee’s by reviewing the number of other migrants. Humanistic priorities folks.

  3. Macro 3

    Couldn’t agree more with the above post. It is criminal that we let our young people idle while at the same time bringing in people from overseas to do mostly manual work. Furthermore the 5.2% unemployment rate is of course a completely bullshit statistic where even those with 1 hours work per week (and there are many in that category unfortunately) are counted as in employment.

    • Leftie 3.1

      And National fudges unemployment stats…. “NZ unemployment rate tumbles, and workforce shrinks, in recalculation”

      With the stroke of a pen, the number of people unemployed dropped by 12,000, while the number in the workforce has also dropped.

      But the changes are purely statistical, with not a single job being created or lost in the changes.

      On Wednesday Statistics New Zealand released a report outlining revisions to labour market research, designed to better identify job seekers and to bring the official figures in line with international standards.
      It is the first major change to the calculations since the household labour force survey was introduced in 1985.

      READ MORE: NZ unemployment jumps to 5.7 per cent despite strong job growth

      As a result of the changes, there have been substantial revisions to household labour force estimates, dating all the way back to 2007, to give accurate comparisons to future reports.

      According to the new reports, the unemployment rate was 5.2 per cent in the March 2016, compared to 5.7 per cent in the original report, with the number considered unemployed dropping by 12,000 to 132,000.

      Meanwhile the labour force participation rate dropped by 0.3 percentage points to 68.7 per cent.

      The figures have been recalculated for every quarterly household labour force survey back to the start 2005.

      The new figures show that in December 2015, unemployment is now calculated to have fallen to 5 per cent, compared to 5.4 per cent under the old calculation.
      Chris Green, director of economics at First NZ Capital said the figures suggested that the labour market was tighter than expected, however despite this inflation still remained unusually low.

      The figures did not prompt Green to change his forecast that the Reserve Bank would cut the official cash rate to 2 per cent in August.

      <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/81579257/NZ-unemployment-rate-tumbles-and-workforce-shrinks-in-recalculation

      • Cinny 3.1.1

        Strongly agree.
        Living in a place where tourism and horticulture are huge, unemployment rates are totally season dependent. Many businesses take on extra staff over Christmas and Summer, then the harvests start creating more work early Autumn.

        I wonder what the unemployment rate is in the winter?. As that is when the seasonal workers depart and just the locals remain.
        That 90 day trial works a treat no doubt in that respect, lollol

        I’m sick of the selective figures and statistics that dribble from the governments frothing mouth, thick with the tone of deception and greed.

        Time for a change, Summer is coming XD

    • Chooky 3.2

      +100 Macro…and great Post!…the problem is glaringly obvious to most New Zealanders!

      ….but really the only political party which has addressed it head on is Winston Peters and New Zealand First !…(so this Party gets my party vote next Election)

      • Leftie 3.2.1

        “Huge numbers of Chinese are coming to NZ purely just to buy houses”

        Duncan Garner, who can’t bring himself to call New Zealand a tax haven, “talks with Adam, a real estate agent in Auckland, who says there is a large number of Chinese coming to NZ purely just to buy homes and nothing else.”

        Adam has contacted Winston Peters telling him that he agrees with much of what Winston has said.

        <a href="http://www.radiolive.co.nz/Huge-numbers-of-Chinese-are-coming-to-NZ-purely-just-to-buy-houses/tabid/506/articleID/126803/Default.aspx

        • Anne 3.2.1.1

          “Huge numbers of Chinese are coming to NZ purely just to buy houses”

          Goodness me. Isn’t that what Phil Twyford was warning us about a few months back? And remember the accusations and insults hurled at him. Looks like some people are finally catching up with the reality of the situation.

          • Leftie 3.2.1.1.1

            Yes Anne, Phil Twyford has been vindicated as well, and those certain people cannot deny what’s happening anymore, although I suspect, they would like to.

          • Jilly Bee 3.2.1.1.2

            Absolutely Anne, my son’s brother in law has been endeavouring to purchase a home in Auckland over the past few months – mostly in west Auckland area. He’s been totally outbid by overseas purchasers – yes, Chinese purchasers buying the properties for amounts well over the GV. We sold our property in west Auckland last year (just over 12 months ago) and were pretty gobsmacked by the winning bid. We had decided that after 40 years of Auckland living enough was enough with traffic congestion etc. The property resold a month or so ago for nearly $200K more than we got for it. Just incredulous.

        • whispering kate 3.2.1.2

          I can agree with you Leftie, I have commented before on this blog about the amount of Chinese immigrants who have bought in our street, some reside, others leave them for long periods throughout the year, the latest is our next door neighbour who has sold to Chinese and vacated her home and its been left as a ghost house. I suppose they will leave it vacant for a few months with long grass up to the window sills and then do a quick clean up and flick it on. There are only about 4 Kiwi families left in a street of about 36 homes.

          I cannot believe the Government’s stats on immigration, it sure isn’t what we see in our area. I also think the Government could do China a favour and put some legislation into place to at least, temporarily ease back on their numbers. China would appreciate it as I have read they are now trying to regain illegal funds that their citizens have taken out of the country and invested into housing in places like Canada and here.

          • Anne 3.2.1.2.1

            … the latest is our next door neighbour who has sold to Chinese and vacated her home and its been left as a ghost house. I suppose they will leave it vacant for a few months with long grass up to the window sills and then do a quick clean up and flick it on.

            Yep. I have a good sized brick house next door to me in exactly that condition. Bamboo ‘trees’ killing my hedge. Grassy areas look like a small paddock of hay. Local papers sodden with rain spilling out of the letterbox onto the ground. Owned by a Chinese gentleman who resides in Hong Kong.

            • Chris 3.2.1.2.1.1

              Bloody Chinese. They’ve got a lot to answer for. Key gives them an inch and they take a bloody mile. Can’t trust the buggers.

              • Anne

                Got any Chinese friends Chris? Probably not. I’ve got some. People who have left China and come to live here permanently. They are excellent citizens. They bring their fascinating culture with them and as a result NZ is a better and more colourful place. Same goes for other ethnicities.

                • Leftie

                  Same here Anne, and Chris is being a petty ahole, note how he blames everyone else but John key and his National government, when it’s Key’s agenda that has allowed the speculative market and uncontrolled immigration to spiral way out of control to fuel his fake economy, that obviously he is anticipating not to go bust until sometime after the next election.

  4. Pat 4

    I wonder how much this issue is tied to the govts financialising of its debt….if we said on average each immigrant is bringing 100k ( a guess) into the country we are looking at an inflow of 16 billion and that excludes DFI from without, that is largely entering the housing market and keeping the dollar high….is what is stopping the govt from taking the obvious action to do with the band the NZ dollar trades in and its impact on its borrowing (and I don’t mean the obvious exchange rate effect)?

    • save nz 4.1

      @Pat apparently it the estimated costs of infrastructure of each new house in Auckland is $125,000 for ratepayers, so we are gaining a net loss for every migrant just on that. Then there is the social security costs, (schools, health care, superannuation) as so forth – the loss of job for a local (lets face it with a 5.2% unemployment rate, we can train people to becomes, chefs, restaurant managers, farm hands and so forth. ) Then factor in accommodation supplements, community services cards, and working for families that will be available for any citizen of this country.

      Does not add up!!

      Why did National not take out property investment from the rich migrant category 5 years ago when the crisis started?

      To me it is some deliberate policy to keep National in power, even though they must know that long term there is going to be big problems and deficits for the country into bankrupcy .

      It will be like Muldoon all over again, driving the country broke when someone new government comes in to examine the books. Then the true fraud will be exposed.

      • Pat 4.1.1

        SaveNZ…my 100K figure is merely a guess to illustrate a point…..most migrants (obviously not the children) will come to this country bringing their liquidated assets with them….I guesstimate that may average 100k per immigrant and the point demonstrated is the vast sum it represents and its impact on both the exchange rate and the property inflation……it is part of the disconnect between local incomes and property prices.
        Then there is the exchange rate …….

    • Cinny 4.2

      I know for a fact around here that all the seasonal working immigrants send most of their money back to their families. They don’t spend up large in the local economy.

      Tourists do spend up to a certain point, however, many, many young tourists just cruise around taking advantage of the freedom camping, no accommodation costs.

      However, Auckland will be very different from Motueka. Wonder how much the casinos profit, as gambling is illegal in some countries, so they come to NZ to gamble.

  5. Chuck 5

    The University of Waikato has just released this report…

    http://www.mbie.govt.nz/publications-research/publications/housing-and-property/nidea-report-immigration-housing-literature-review.pdf

    “The study instead concludes that the main drivers of rising prices in the city are low interest rates, investor demand, capital gains expectations and New Zealanders returning from overseas.”

    “Any changes to immigration policy by the Government were therefore “unlikely to have much impact on the housing market”, the authors of the Waikato University paper concluded.

    But but…all those foreign sounding names contained in the stolen customer sales data from that nasty Real estate company…Twyford…that’s who we will blame.

    • Leftie 5.1

      It’s a lie Chuck, paid for by a desperate National government that is trying to tell Kiwis that what they are seeing with their own two eyes isn’t happening and they are treating New Zealanders like they are a pack of dumb idiots.

      The National government are an insult to one’s intelligence.

      • Chuck 5.1.1

        “It’s a lie Chuck, paid for by a desperate National government”

        Thats a pretty bold statement Leftie, to accuse The University of Waikato and Dr Bill Cochrane and Professor Jacques Poot of making shit up.

        A quick search strongly indicates that Cochrane knows his area of expertise.

        http://www.waikato.ac.nz/php/research.php?mode=show&author=24357

        • Leftie 5.1.1.1

          National will always pay someone to write and say what they want. John key said it himself: “He’s one academic, and like lawyers, I can provide you with another one that will give you a counterview.”

          John Key’s unhappy week at the BBC
          <a href="http://www.listener.co.nz/commentary/john-keys-unhappy-week-at-the-bbc/

          Read the article, linked @ 6 “The research paper, commissioned by the Government”

        • Keith 5.1.1.2

          I agree with Leftie, another of the Nats big lies.

          If past examples are anything to go by National will quote it as fact before the flawed logic it is based on is discovered, then its too late. It’s a government ordered study. Recall the narrow parametered pre ordered whitewash for Judith Collins and or the taxhaven one done by a friend of the National Party who specialises in tax avoidance, legally of course, other such scripted pieces?

          How the hell does 200,000 temp visa people coming here annually not make any real difference to our housing problems, the majority of which are coming to Auckland. Really, do they all go and live in a cloud? Nope that’s not an issue. Oh and foreign speculators are not an issue either. What flawed government supplied data is this tripe based on.

          The big question I have why Waikato University did this for National!

          • Craig H 5.1.1.2.1

            Most temporary visas are holiday-based visas (visitor and working holiday), so while they may visit Auckland, it will primarily be in tourist accommodation, not permanent accommodation.

            Not to say there has not or will not be an impact, because it’s totally obvious that there was and is, but it’s not the whole 200,000.

          • Exile 5.1.1.2.2

            Why – how dependent are University of Waikato on International students?

            Case in point, 10.000 students graduated with level 7 qualifications from private colleges in Auckland. The colleges boast that they have passrates of 99% and they cater solely to international students. NZQA happily approves and after their 9 month level 7 course (where no one fails) the students get their visa.
            Australia demands a lot more. 2 years study, Only at reputable institutions: universities and TAFE. These students shuns Australia because most wouldnt be able to meet the requirements there. NZ though allows private colleges, run for profit, to recruit students in India (mainly Punjab and Gujarat), Philippines and China. These institutions pays commission of between 30% – 70% of the course fees to agents. Its a VISA factory and it makes a few college owners rich but it has nothing to do with educations, its sole purpose are residency.

            Universities are the same. Massey for example would be bankrupt had it not been for international students. Waikato needs international students dearly, their budget would be slashed without them. The international students arent drawn to NZ for our education, they are drawn for Visa purposes. Waikato actively promote the path to Visa when they recruit foreign students.

        • Exile 5.1.1.3

          I also had a quick look at his credentials and came to the opposite conclusion.

          In this case his publication list stands out for all the wrong reasons. (I only checked 3 years behind in time). There are a plethora of so called publications. NON are in high ranking academic journals. At senior lecture level you publish in journals. Journals are ranked by impact factor and we can all check the ranking.
          The focus on conferences, primarily local but some overseas, listings of workshops and publications at stakeholder initiated research symposiums / conferences / workshops are rather distinct and nothing that impresses.

          As reputable academics quality matters. Attending conference after conference when you are at senior lecturer level is not considered to be of much use other than for networking processes.

          Prof. Poot is different, He has certain trackrecord. He seems to be in demand within migration circles. He produces book-chapters together with European academics who seem to have, years ago, reached the conclusion that migration is helping national GDP:s and that increased migration provides positive economic benefits to nations. That is a rather disputed conclusion but he is part of the debate.

        • save nz 5.1.1.4

          Didn’t Joyce personally write the questions to work out how many foreigners were buying up our property so that we still do not know the true figures….

      • Chooky 5.1.2

        +100 Leftie and Keith…New Zealanders have eyes to see…more BIG LIES from jonkey nactional

    • DoublePlusGood 5.2

      Where the hell do they think a lot of the investor demand is coming from? Honestly, some researchers.

    • Michelle 5.3

      Just because they produced research Chuck doesn’t mean that the research is right people have right to critique and question the validity of the research maybe they are trying to look after their own jobs so they will tell the government exactly what they want to hear.

    • Stuart Munro 5.4

      The finding that “it cannot be established conclusively that offshore investors drive up prices in central Auckland” is among the weakest of possible answers to concerns like Twyford’s. I imagine I could assemble data that supported a problematic level of foreign activity in a couple of weeks, were I to begin sampling.

    • DH 5.5

      This…

      “The study instead concludes that the main drivers of rising prices in the city are low interest rates, investor demand, capital gains expectations and New Zealanders returning from overseas.”

      Now why would a NZer returning from overseas put more pressure on housing than an immigrant?

      The answer, obviously, is they couldn’t and wouldn’t. They would effectively be an immigrant.

      • Chuck 5.5.1

        “Now why would a NZer returning from overseas put more pressure on housing than an immigrant?”

        They don’t DH the report states its Inconclusive.

        “2. The contribution of the inflow of Australians and of returning New Zealanders to population growth in Auckland has had a bigger impact on house price increases than other permanent and long-term (PLT) arrivals”. “Inconclusive”

        This part of the quote from the NZ Herald is misleading “and New Zealanders returning from overseas.”

        Maybe the Herald writer meant this? – “The decrease of New Zealanders leaving in recent years, due to relatively strong economic growth and a subdued Australian economy, has had a bigger impact on rising house prices in Auckland than the growing number of migrants settling in Auckland”. “Supported”

        • DH 5.5.1.1

          So if they don’t then what’s your point? You claimed, through the Herald quote, that immigrants aren’t among the main drivers of house prices. Now you’re withdrawing that claim?

          • Chuck 5.5.1.1.1

            “You claimed, through the Herald quote, that immigrants aren’t among the main drivers of house prices. Now you’re withdrawing that claim?” No.

            I suggest you read the report in full. Here are a couple more of the six hypotheses that were considered…

            “3. Current and recent (5 years previous) net international migration trends (considering both PLT arrivals and departures) have had a minor impact on the Auckland housing market, relative to other factors. Supported”

            “4. Investor migrants are not having a disproportionate impact on the Auckland housing market as they are purchasing largely commercial property or a single individual residence. Supported”

            • DH 5.5.1.1.1.1

              It will take a while to absorb the full 34 pages but I can say the report has been misrepresented. The authors were not researching the effect of migration on property prices. They were charged with critiquing already published literature on housing. So the report appears to conclude little except that certain literature supports a certain argument (or not).

              This disclaimer by the author(s) is salient;

              “It should be understood by the reader that this short review has a number of limitations.Firstly, we review only the New Zealand literature that focuses explicitly on this topic and give no consideration to studies of the broader macro-economic impacts of net international migration, which may have implications for housing markets. Secondly, the review of the local literature is accompanied by a brief consideration of some representative contemporary studies from the international literature, particularly with respect to countries for which a comparison with New Zealand can be considered appropriate. Hence we do not provide a review of the whole corpus of this literature. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this research note makes no new contribution to research in this area beyond reviewing existing evidence, i.e. no new empirical research has been undertaken in the preparation of this work. Instead we provide a review and synthesis based on our professional judgement.”

  6. Leftie 6

    The National government commissioned a study to lie that uncontrolled immigration is not a problem.

    “Migrants not to blame for Auckland’s house prices, study finds”

    Migrants are having a relatively small impact on Auckland’s rising house prices, a new study says.
    The research paper, commissioned by the Government, appears to contradict recent claims by Opposition parties and others that immigration is to blame for house price inflation.
    The study instead concludes that the main drivers of rising prices in the city are low interest rates, investor demand, capital gains expectations and New Zealanders returning from overseas.
    Any changes to immigration policy by the Government were therefore “unlikely to have much impact on the housing market”, the authors of the Waikato University paper concluded.
    Limiting new arrivals could even make the situation worse, they said, because it would reduce the number of skilled migrants required to ramp up housing supply.
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) commissioned the research earlier this year to get a clearer picture of the effect of record migration levels on housing in Auckland.
    Net migration levels reached 68,000 people in the year to June. A large proportion of arrivals are settling in Auckland, where housing demand is outstripping supply. That has prompted calls to curb immigration.
    The Reserve Bank recently told the Government to consider reviewing its immigration settings to stem rising house prices.
    The Labour Party and New Zealand First believe migrant numbers should be immediately reduced to ease the pressure on jobs and housing.
    The public also appears to be in favour of new immigration controls. A Newshub poll released last night showed that 60 per cent of New Zealanders want the Government to let fewer immigrants into the country.
    But the Waikato University study, which draws on existing New Zealand and international research, reinforces the Government’s position that migrants are not primarily responsible for high house prices.
    “Overall we find that … visa-controlled immigration into New Zealand, and specifically into Auckland, in the recent past has had a relatively small impact on house prices compared to other demand factors,” the study said.
    “Consequently, changes in immigration policy, which can impact only on visa-controlled immigration, are unlikely to have much impact on the housing market.”
    The authors said growth in net migration was largely driven by student and temporary working visas, who were less likely to buy houses.
    The fall in New Zealanders leaving the country in recent years has had much bigger impact on rising house prices in Auckland than the rising number of new arrivals, they said.
    The study also found that migrant investors were not having a disproportionate impact on Auckland’s housing market because they were mostly buying commercial property or a single house.
    While the study did not look specifically at potential changes to immigration policy, it said any reduction in migrants could do more harm than good.
    “It is plausible that any policy-driven reduction to the inflow of migrants to offset housing demand is likely to exacerbate skills shortages…”
    Finance Minister Bill English yesterday ruled out any changes to immigration settings, saying that businesses were still facing skills shortages.
    The regions and the construction and IT sectors were “crying out” for skilled workers, he said.
    “We’ve got to keep in mind here that the biggest single driver is Kiwis staying home, and we regard that as a measure of success.”
    But Labour’s housing spokesman Phil Twyford said this was “total spin” because returning New Zealanders made up just a quarter of net migrants.
    The Government needed to “throw off its ideological blinkers” and cut immigration numbers, he said.
    “The Reserve Bank couldn’t be more explicit. There are economists almost every day coming out and saying the Government’s got to look at the effects of immigration on the Auckland housing market.”
    – NZ Herald

    <a href="http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11691145

  7. Anno1701 7

    but then who will make all the Pizzas ?

    • weka 7.1

      Who will make all the minimum wage pizzas?

      • Anno1701 7.1.1

        exactly !

        why do you think you can buy a pizza for $5…..

        • grumpy 7.1.1.1

          I worked in a bar 20 years ago where we sold pizzas for $5 & I was earning $12 an hour

        • grumpy 7.1.1.2

          I worked in a bar 20 years ago where we sold pizzas for $5 & I was earning $12 an hour…….

          • Anno1701 7.1.1.2.1

            do pizza hut sell beer ?

            nope so you comparison is invalid im afraid

            its like those free snacks on the bar, just there to make you buy the product with the highest margin…

        • lprent 7.1.1.3

          Because the pizza offers saying exactly that appear in my mailbox all of the time. Of course there are more than a few caveats.

          • Anno1701 7.1.1.3.1

            “pizza offers’

            the are ALWAYS 5 dollars…..

            • save nz 7.1.1.3.1.1

              @Pat – will chefs and farm workers from the Philippines and India on minimum wages have $100,000 with them?

              We seem to be importing in people who have no money and forced to live in crowded conditions picking fruit or what have you.

              At the opposite end we have the billionaires buying up farms and State house real cheap due to the “P’ problem apparently), our residential property and so forth.

              Nothing about our immigration policy makes any sense.

              • Pat

                @Pat – will chefs and farm workers from the Philippines and India on minimum wages have $100,000 with them?

                I doubt it savenz….however i know of several UK immigrants who brought millions with them….hence the average. I imagine quite a number of the immigrants buying million dollar plus houses in Auckland didn’t arrive empty handed either.

                ‘Nothing about our immigration policy makes any sense.”

                It makes sense if you want to prevent a housing price collapse, avoid capital flight and keep the dollar up…

              • Cinny

                Agreed, and also many immigrant families employ their own kids to help them, keeps running costs down. Don’t get me wrong family businesses are a great thing, but it is another factor I believe in the unemployment and immigration debate.

                I love the diversity and multiculturalism in NZ but the immigration policy is rubbish.

              • Pat

                something else to consider savenz…..international students paying fees sourced from without….and theoretically arriving with the ability to cover living expenses as well.3 or 4 year degree at an average 30K p.a. or so. 100K right there.

                https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/for/international-students/is-tuition-fees-and-costs/undergraduate-tuition-fees-2016-international.html

            • grumpy 7.1.1.3.1.2

              You seem to have totally missed the point, I was talking about 20 years ago..

  8. Visubversa 8

    A few examples from my morning’s JP work. Phillipino scaffolders – yes Auckland possibly needs those. An Indian pastry chef for a French bakery – really? A Vietnamese nail technician, and more Chinese IT and Clerical people than I could count.

    • mauī 8.1

      I would love to know how many builders we let in, and how many are qualified to jump straight in and help Auckland out. And how many are actually doing that. My guess is not very many.

      • save nz 8.1.1

        So easy with fake paperwork – maybe not just the dodgy visas, but also false qualifications too..

        We have the fake steel, the fake plumbing, now we can have fake builders, IT workers and nail technicians…

  9. save nz 9

    People might hate to hear it but the migrants we should be aiming to get are people like Dotcom – entrepreneurs who apparently can control 5% of internet traffic and work in the new economy. If it was properly managed so that skilled migrants paid local taxes here then Dotcom is the type of migrant we should get. He doesn’t even own a house, employed people, lived here and did something that was not bad for the environment. He was even a renter!

    Instead we seem to want low wage poorly skilled migrant workers who will need assisted welfare immediately from the state due to the fact they are on minimum wages, or high wealth migrants that just buy assets here and then don’t live here at all or very often.

    Before anyone starts going on about the Key/Dotcom drama – he has never been convicted of any crime so far and You Tube while also has file sharing also controlling a lot of web traffic won a very similar case in the US. That is why the Sony lawyers told Sony that Dotcom may be found not guilty and they did not join the Warners/Disney suit.

    Of course now the FBI and so many powerful US lobbyists are involved it is pretty unlikely he will get a fair trial in the US, and the Disney dreams of TPP criminalising any sort of freedom on the Internet so so old powerful rich US media foggies can control it seems likely.

    So when you unlock a phone, copy a DVD you paid for or what have you, if TPP lobbyists like Warner and Disney get their way – then it will be criminal act that local governments are forced to prosecute over. And even if you never work in the US, like Dotcom have nothing to do with the US, somehow they can decide to make the local government spend millions trying to get the person to the US so they can be prosecuted there instead of the country they live in or work in and Warners and Disney don’t have to pay a dime for the lawsuit.

    • Exile 9.1

      Dotcom has been brilliant for the GDP. Supporting small businesses, legal offices and restaurateurs a plenty.

      However there are few like him. I would be content if we capped the number of skilled migration visas and stopped the practice of providing visas to students that graduate after a 9 month private college course. To me, if you have spent 3 years at a University here I am happy to support a graduate job search visa.
      But attending a private college in Auckland or Tauranga then finding a job at a petrol-station, cafe, restaurant, fruit orchard or security company (being called assistant manager of course so visa is granted) is not what our migration politics should be about.

      Can I also say that we must keep a clear difference between migrants and refugees. Refugee numbers are very low in NZ, I wouldn’t mind an increase there. I also think we have a special responsibility towards Polynesia where special rules should apply.

      • Anno1701 9.1.1

        “But attending a private college in Auckland or Tauranga’

        you mean like the ones that hold their classes in Punjabi ?

        Or hold them on the weekends so the students are free to work weekdays ( the reason they are really here)

      • mauī 9.1.2

        Refugee numbers are very low in NZ, I wouldn’t mind an increase there. I also think we have a special responsibility towards Polynesia where special rules should apply.

        +1 Absolutely. A lot of people want us to ramp up refugee numbers I would say, its shameful.

      • Craig H 9.1.3

        We have special residence categories for the Pacific Islands, but I agree that we could do more.

      • Craig H 9.1.4

        Immigration NZ stopped the practice of granting work visas to students after 9 month courses – they now have to study for 2 academic years for qualifications below level 7 (bachelor’s degree or equivalent).

  10. Stuart Munro 10

    There are several issues that seem to have been glossed over in the immigration policies presently operated by the Key Kleptocracy:

    Skill breakdown. I personally think that unskilled foreign workers should be verboten while NZ unemployment exceeds 0.5%. NZ does not benefit by displacing NZers – in fact it is likely to cause significant costs in other sectors.

    Locality. Even back in 2000, the refugee support groups I was part of were having to ask to send refugees to places other than Auckland, where social supports were not so oversubscribed.

    Good fit. It is an unpleasant truth that some cultures more readily find a place in NZ than others. There are firm statistics on this – emigrating UK residents for example are over-represented in crime statistics, and the import of P is dominated by a small demographic of Asian migrants. Somali migrants proved to be a poor fit, Afghans (the Tampa folk) an excellent one.

    A wise government would be selective to maximise both the experience of the migrants and the host community. This of course is not by any stretch of the imagination a wise government – Hebephrenic buffoons is too kind a description.

  11. Quite correct. Greedy NZ employers love high migration of migrants from counties with lower standards of living because they will work for little and put up with heaps of crap.
    It makes me laugh how National are trying to say the housing crisis is expats returning or kiwis not leaving rather than the high levels of migrants coming in from third world counties that are creating the pressure in Auckland. It also makes me laugh how they use the excuse of needing more skilled workers but do diddly squat to put programmes, apprenticeships or training in place so that our own people can learn how to do these jobs. The issue they have is that the migrants coming here are coffee makers, taxi drivers or as you say, bar staff rather than the skills we are in need off. National and their greedy corporate mates must think we are all too stupid and don’t see through this rort. Truth is, they love migrants with little skill and who come from lower standard of living countries as they lower the wage bill for their greedy companies.

  12. miravox 12

    The old inadvertent truth can explain quite a lot

    There’s been a lot surrounding the exodus of people to Australia that are lured by higher wages. There’s some calls here for employers to pay more. What’s your take on that?

    We would love to see wages drop.

    The way we want to see wages increase is because productivity is greater. So people can afford more.

    Not just inflationary reasons, otherwise it’s a bit of a vicious circle as it comes back to you in higher interest rates. We really want to drive that out.

    The way I understand it, unless a country invests in workers and technology, productivity equation can only show an increase by paying workers less. This explains NZ immigration levels of low/unskilled workers to a ‘t’.

    • Cinny 12.1

      Australia is a scary place to live now, they are not as nice to Kiwi’s anymore. Least that’s the reason a few people I know have returned to NZ. Many benefits for Aussies living in NZ, but kiwis living in aussie… nada for them, maybe a holiday camp on christmas island if you are lucky lololz

  13. One Anonymous Bloke 13

    There’s absolutely nothing wrong with high levels of immigration that a competent committed government can’t make provisions for.

    This bought pack of cronies isn’t up to the task. That’s the problem.

    • miravox 13.1

      This bought pack of cronies isn’t up to the task. That’s the problem.

      +1

      It’s not immigration itself that is the problem, (and if we can take in so many new residents, why are more refugees not in the mix?), it’s the government’s laissez faire leadership and underlying objectives that make immigration such a contentious issue.

      • save nz 13.1.1

        Refugees probably don’t vote for repressive regimes… aka the Natz

        I notice the Natz seemed to be getting in as many migrants as possible from the more corrupt countries… they love National – you donate money and things happen… just like their countries…

    • Stuart Munro 13.2

      The greater public probably do not desire high levels of immigration. I see no particular reason that, in a democracy, such a wish should be disrespected.

  14. RedBaronCV 14

    Then there is the other statement dragged out at regular intervals. “We need to lower the average age of our workforce so it isn’t all pensioners.” Well that one has been around for + 30 years and the workforce age has not dropped.
    Since a fair number of our migrants seem to have brought their parents with them
    I’d like to discount that line of reasoning.

  15. millsy 15

    The company I work for employs a lot of immigrants (electrical work and meter reading), and from where I am sitting, it seems that they are sent out into the field with poor training, and pressured to do a very heavy workload, with numerous reports run so the the slightest discrepancy can be pointed out, which is promptly jumped on with the appropriate hauling over the coals.

    They then wonder why so many mistakes are being made with the installation of smart meters, performed by immigrants contstantly fearful of getting sacked/deported if they screw up.

    • save nz 16.1

      Thanx Grumpy
      Link is worth reading to what happened in Britain – a bit hard of the Muslims though, but I’m sure a lot of truth in most of what he says.

      It is also true how the modern Lefties have actually become too ideological about the issue and not looked at the wider issues of protecting indigenous populations and welfare and work systems …

      “The real villain is Tony Blair, Britain’s worst twentieth-century prime minister. Blair made three blunders in regard to immigration out of a mixture of contempt for his own people, a compulsive wish to prance on the world stage and look good, and a complete lack of foresight. When the East European countries emerged from the long night of Soviet socialism and went on to enter the European Union in 2004, they were entering an entity one of whose central principles was the free movement of labour. However, most of the existing EU countries imposed severe restrictions on migration from the East, but Britain under Blair did not and two million immigrants arrived. Blair always proclaimed that he was the apostle of modernity and yet this influx he promoted has trapped Britain into being a low-productivity economy where there is no incentive to modernise through labour-saving machinery, including computing, or through better organised services.”

  16. save nz 17

    It is also happening in NZ. I gave a few hours work to a student via student job search. She must have been on a student visa. After a month she asked me for my IRD number which I thought was odd as she worked about 2 hours per week babysitting. The next thing is she said she was having an arranged marriage in India. When she returned she was not really as happy as she had been before, I did say to her, if she ever had any problems that I would help her, so who knows what the husband was like. But then she found work that was up to the 20 hours per week on her student visa.

    She would defiantly be offered a job in NZ and get residency, because she was effectively duplicating her degree here that she already had in India and would be doubly qualified as well as being a lovely person and the work she qualified for was poorly paid so in high demand by NZ employers to get such a great person at cheap rates. But the question is, what about the husband???? The families relatives and so forth??? Each visa is the person who is vetted, it then is their future spouse, relatives and so forth. We have just the tip of the iceberg with these immigration numbers…

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