Taihoa on Immigration?

Written By: - Date published: 9:42 am, June 7th, 2016 - 213 comments
Categories: capitalism, Economy, farming, im/migration, minimum wage, unemployment, workers' rights - Tags: , , ,

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters has called for an unprecedented drop in immigration numbers, suggesting that the current 124,000 a year be dropped to between 7000 and 15,000.

Peters also wants potential immigrants to be thoroughly interviewed at the border, and their knowledge of NZ to be tested.

“There has to be an understanding of what this country’s values, laws and society is like. Sign up to a loyalty to New Zealand, to our flag, to our laws and to our beliefs. And our respect for other beliefs and above all respect for all people regardless of gender. “

Peters notes that high immigration levels are keeping New Zealanders out of  jobs and ramping up housing and infrastructure problems.

“This is not working for Auckland or New Zealand. In fact it’s bringing enormous pressure to all infrastructure to Auckland including enormous demand in housing with a lack of supply. And you want to deal with some of these problems and you want Auckland to breathe and get a chance to develop. You can’t go on with these record levels of immigration.”

Labour Party leader Andrew Little agrees, to an extent,  saying on Morning Report that a better balance needs to be struck that matches the economy’s real demand.

“There is a case to say we need to manage immigration when it comes to our workforce needs.”

Little, however, does not subscribe to Winston Peters’ Trumpist line of a brutal cut. He suggests that it’s a matter for adjustment, rather than simply slashing numbers.

“I’m focussed on what’s happening in the workforce … it’s a matter of common sense when the economy is slowing and we have rising levels of unemployment.”

Clearly, there is an issue here. The record levels of immigration are helping prop up the economy, but at a time when unemployment is still above 5%, a look at the settings couldn’t hurt. One economist even thinks that a cut in migration is one of the answers to the Auckland housing crisis.

It’s been said by some that immigrants will do jobs Kiwis won’t and to an extent that’s true. However, that’s possibly because Kiwis don’t want to be exploited on minimum wage. Kiwis are less likely to put their hands up for being ripped off on dairy farms, where the salaries sound reasonable until you factor in the enormous hours to be worked and the lack of time off away from the farm.

The misuse of the Essential Skills work visas is a continuing problem. In theory, workers are ‘sponsored’ in by an employer to work in a specific workplace and paid a reasonable salary. In reality, many are shifted around from work site to work site, work long, long hours and have tithes for accommodation and food taken from their wages and do not always do work that actually matches their skills.

In Christchurch, many migrant rebuild workers feature in the growing homelessness stats. They make do dossing or sleeping in their cars, because we don’t offer a well planned housing infrastructure.

I was made aware last week of one prominent company that fitted out a packing hall with work benches at a low height because they intended only hiring Asian workers, who they believed to be shorter on average than local workers. They pay these workers an hourly rate less than the adult minimum wage. But they also donate to the National Party, so that’s not a problem.

It’s probably time for an easing back on immigration numbers. Not because of prejudice, but because of practicality. Let’s get our unemployment rate down and train people already here for the jobs where there is a skill shortage. And lets get our provinces back working, first and foremost. The Government could take a lead there, by shifting call centres and data processing to places like Gisborne, Greymouth and Whanganui.

As a country, we need to be welcoming to guests, residents and future citizens. However, a non-emotional look at whether we’ve got the immigration flow right is the correct call. Andrew Little is spot on to say the numbers need to match need. Winston Peter’s approach is brutal, ignorant and self serving.

Which is why Andrew Little has pitched this right and Winston Peters has not.

Lets look at the numbers, but lets not forget that these are workers just like you and I, and lets not lose our humanity in the process.




213 comments on “Taihoa on Immigration? ”

  1. And so it begins. I reject this call from Winston. Fear and politics – in bed for votes and the offspring will eat everyone, or at least their humanity.

    • Karen 1.1

      +1 Marty Mars.

      I loathe this kind of racist dog-whistling that Peters indulges in.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1

        There’s no racism in it at all. Just simple fact – we’ve over-extended ourselves by importing so many people.

        • adam

          Looking at Winston’s remarks, I agree did not see any racism.

          • Karen

            “We want them to salute our flag, respect our laws, honour our institutions and, above all, don’t bring absolutely anti-women attitudes with them, treating women like cattle, like fourth-class citizens.”

            This is a dog whistle designed to appeal to people with Islamaphobic tendencies.

            If it was just about the number of immigrants he wouldn’t have talked about the need to interview people at the border about whether their values were the same as whatever he has decided are NZers’ values.

            It is typical Peters – always willing to encourage fear and prejudice in order to get the redneck vote. Muldoon was the same.

            I have no problem with him talking about the level of immigration.

            • Draco T Bastard

              You have no problem with people who treat women as fourth class people coming here?

              • weka

                What questions would be asked at the border to filter out the misogynists?

                • adam

                  Name our women Prime Ministers, Name the women’s organisations that helped get the vote, is abortion legal – discuss, who are better drivers men or women, what is intersectionality, and why is this feminist idea good for society….

                  • weka

                    That would weed out undereducated people or those without the internet. It’s not going to stop misogynists.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  As much psychological reading that I’ve done over the last 20+ years I wouldn’t like to state the questions. I would like say that the point of the questions would be to highlight peoples attitude to women, other ethnicities and cultures.

                • mauī

                  “Have you been called out for misogyny by readers in the past when you’ve written posts for left wing blogs?”

              • As opposed to the 2nd class or worse way that many women are treated now here already? It is a non argument draco that you put up.

            • M. Gray

              The refugees going to Germany are being assimilated they have to learn the language and cannot go to live in certain areas unless they have a decent job and in areas of France the rich just give money and say we don’t want those people here so what are NZers complaining about Winston’s comments they aren’t so bad compared to what is going on in the rest of the world

            • Bill

              As an immigrant.

              You want me to salute the NZ flag? Not happening.
              Respect NZ laws? Nope. There are some fucking atrocious laws in the mix.
              Honour NZ institutions? Not happening.

              I guess the next time Winston the Wanker runs into me on the street he can wave his wee presser and reiterate his demand, already made by him to me on three occasions, that I ‘go back to where I came from’.

              And I’ll give him the same basic response I did on those previous three occasions.

              • lprent

                As an immigrant.

                You want me to salute the NZ flag? Not happening.
                Respect NZ laws? Nope. There are some fucking atrocious laws in the mix.
                Honour NZ institutions? Not happening.

                As a scion of a very long settled family (I think I was at the least the 5th generation born here), Winston can go and screw himself up his belly button on all of those points as well.

                I saluted the flag when I was in the army in the 1970s because that was a requirement of the job. I thought (and still do) that what I was doing was important enough to put up with some of the petty bullshit. I never have saluted a flag since (or before) and have no intentions of doing so. That kind of crap we can leave to the moronic patriotic idiots from places like the US that need external cohesion imposed before they will cooperate with each other.

                Local laws, I will respect to the extent that I think they are worth following. There is absolutely nothing that requires me to respect them, apart from if I find them worth following, and if I am willing to take the consequences of not doing so. Surprisingly that means I’m pretty damn law abiding simply because I take time to study the reasons for particular laws are in place and I make active decisions about when I will violate them.

                Laws are simply guidelines that describe the penalties for overstepping them. They aren’t any kind of religious proscriptions handed down from on high, because the people making and enforcing them are more than touch fallible. Mind you, in my view so is the religious crap as well.

                • Once was Tim

                  Very wise @lprent.
                  We seem to have forgotten that in a democracy – we have a right to protest in whatever form.

                  You’d also no doubt be concerned about the degradation of our public service (usually middle and upper management) and the way various departments and Munstries are run as little fiefdoms in our corporatised world.
                  Given what I have learned about our Immigration service – especially since it’s become part of Joyce’s bugger’s muddle of MoBIE (cobbled together entities designed to advance a neo-liberal agenda – going forward, so-to-speak, as a matter of fact ekshully, with various ‘learnings’ and ‘change agency’), I have absolutely no faith in it whatsoever to administer Winnie’s policies – let alone existing ones anyway.
                  It’s only very recently MoBIE has taken an interest in the ‘slave labour’ antics of some unscrupulous employers – and even then it’s a half-hearted effort driven by those under-resourced public servants at the coal face.
                  perhaps the international students whose families do due diligence on educational institutions, then beg borrow or steal in order to send their kids here, only to find they get ripped off with excessive fees and under-delivery of the commodified factory education – and then who go out of business – leaving their children working as prostitutes or in other ways that effectively leave them living on half the minimum wage (i.e. by the time they pay things like ‘rent’ in cash; and/or are offered PR in return for $30k payments).
                  perhaps the NZ citizen, who’s been one as long as my own son has, but who then has to answer questions like “what kind of undies does your partner wear?” when having to justify/prove his marriage to an Indian national; as well as being potentially scammed by information that can only have come from the department.
                  the outrageous fees being charged by so-called ‘consultants’ whose only function appears to be an ability (sort of) to fill out forms and to clip the ticket
                  I’d suggest that before we even contemplate the likes of Winnie’s policies, we’d be better off looking at our own back yard and the shit we’ve created over the past 8 or 9 years.

                  Let’s not even touch on MPI or various others – suffice to say we should resist the bullshit and all efforts to just see us as either ‘consumers’ or tax-payers rather than as citizens with rights (and THEN responsibilites)

  2. Adrian 2

    Why is decentralization not part of the conversation?.
    Whichever way you look at it, and whatever you think is the underlying cause, Auckland has Growth, transport and Housing issues, so why does everything have to be in Auckland??
    The great catch cry of the internet age was some guff about ‘working from home’, and sure, there are accountants and lawyers sitting at home in the Hawkes Bay, and the occasional call centre tucked away down the back streets of various towns, but there needs to be an actual policy, a country wide agreement to decentralize and create a country wide population and economy.
    The country is not full, there’s plenty of parking in Hastings.

    *This in no way negates my dislike of cheap and exploited labour in the farming and agriculture industry…but that’s another story…

  3. BM 3

    I was made aware last week of one prominent company that fitted out a packing hall with work benches at a low height because they intended only hiring Asian workers, who they believed to be shorter on average than local workers. They pay these workers an hourly rate less than the adult minimum wage. But they also donate to the National Party, so that’s not a problem.

    You’ve reported this company?, if not, why not?

    • Who to, BM? They’re a well connected company who don’t give a flying one about the law. Their strategy is to have a scared, compliant workforce on rolling short term contracts who know that if they raise a fuss they’ll be sent home. That’s Key’s brighter future in its full glory.

      • BM 3.1.1

        So you’re saying the Department of Labour would do nothing if you reported this company?

        • Stuart Munro

          They rarely investigate – I lost count of the times I sent them to NZ registered slave ships. Didn’t want to know – neither did their minister.

          • BM

            Should go to the media, RNZ would no doubt run with it.

            • Stuart Munro

              A bit late now mate – this was in the 90s – when this pattern of not investigating began.

        • lprent

          Yes. That is what I understand will happen.

          Apart from anything else there really isn’t a department of Labour any more.

          It is what happens when you pull a department’s budget as you wind them inside a ministry and then give them a fraction of their already inadequate previous budget.

          That after all appears to have been the plan.

          But just check out how few times that MoBIE has taken any prosecutions since they were eaten

      • stunned mullet 3.1.2

        Name and shame otherwise I name you liar !

        • te reo putake

          SM, I’m not lying and if you want to suggest otherwise, your posting privileges here are going to be swiftly curtailed. The hourly rate is $14.32 according to the pay slip I’m holding. It’s from May 2016.

          I’m also doing something about it in my own small way, both in this post and privately. But I was given the info confidentially and I’m not going to be responsible for the person concerned, or their workmates, being victimised. Got it?

          • Foreign waka

            Great stuff, a lesson in loyalty Kiwi style – I just don’t think this is what WP meant 😉 The people who give such info will be scared to be outed.

          • Craig H

            Report them to Immigration NZ – migrant exploitation is now a criminal offense under the Immigration Act, and INZ have already started prosecuting people for it.

      • Enough is Enough 3.1.3

        Name them on here.

        Someone in the media will pick it up.

  4. Sabine 4


    it is time for a review and maybe some more long term planning for immigration – consider climate change refugees in this long term planning, not just economical immigrants as is done now.

    and yes he is trumping for the national party voter that is non to pleased at the moment.

    went to rotorua over the weekend and met some farmer lady and her friends while walking the dog on the lake front. Holy shite, non to pleased is me being very very polite.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      went to rotorua over the weekend and met some farmer lady and her friends while walking the dog on the lake front. Holy shite, non to pleased is me being very very polite.


      • Sabine 4.1.1

        housing crisis
        migrant crisis
        money crisis
        but above all, the kids can’t afford to live near by and work, have to move to oz or overseas, can’t see the grand children, and yes quite a few racist remarks thrown in a bit as well.

        i was taken aback as this was a nice lil old lady in her late sixties. And so were her mates. All well to do middle/upper class farming stock. Not happy, not happy at all.

  5. Ad 5

    “However, a non-emotional look at whether we’ve got the immigration flow right is the correct call. Andrew Little is spot on to say the numbers need to match need. Winston Peter’s approach is brutal, ignorant and self serving.”

    +1 to that.

    I am totally grateful that immigration has been high over the last five years – it’s propped much of the Auckland economy up. It’s also changed our society for the better.

    But it is wrong that so much of our export industries is reliant on low-skill, low pay foreign workers. Seasonal work should go to unemployed New Zealanders first.

    We also need a slowdown in our real estate markets – Labour’s policy on foreign land and housing ownership would when instituted be a strong signal not to move here permanently.

  6. Enviro Gal 6

    Far too many children living in poverty,
    Far too many young adults homeless and living in dire circumstances,
    too much homelessness and POVERTY in NZ ,
    of course Winston Peters is right
    to say this is unacceptable and we need to get our country sorted out.

    • None of that is caused by immigration imo.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.1


      • Andre 6.1.2

        marty, where am I going wrong with this train of thought?

        High immigration is putting pressure on the limited supply of housing (and probably also keeping wages down).
        Therefore the cost of housing rises, faster than incomes rise.
        Therefore, paying for housing eats an ever-greater part of the household budget.
        Until there isn’t enough income to pay for housing AND all the essentials.
        Thereby contributing to causing poverty (unable to pay for essentials) and homelessness (unable to pay for housing).

        Are you OK with this scenario?

        My employer needed to add staff. Because of the conditions on offer, the best applicant was a young fella on a student visa (I’m in a small industry, and I know there were plenty of good locals that didn’t apply because of the conditions). Said young fella was then able to turn his student visa into a residency visa, because of his employment. With his residency visa, his wife was now able to immigrate too. So now we have a good job and a good residence, that could have been available to a local, taken up by a recent immigrant with no particular special skills. (btw, I no longer work there)

        • marty mars

          Ok – imo the housing crisis is caused by speculators. Opportunists and those with multiple properties all trying to make more money and I’d add government ineptitude and deliberate doubling down on neoliberalism.

          The locals didn’t want the job because of low wages and conditions. Why were they given this poor position? Pretty much the same answer as the first paragraph.

          • Andre

            Actually, the wage on offer was quite high. The good skilled locals didn’t apply because it was offered as a casual position with no security of hours or length of employment.

            I would suggest that part of the reason local employers (and landlords) can get away with neoliberal abuses is a plentiful supply of recent immigrants willing to accept conditions that locals won’t. Partly because of undemanding standards for admission.

            So I agree with Little’s pitch to better match immigration with our needs, but definitely not Peters’ “slam the door”.

            • marty mars

              I dont get how you can know the causes and still blame the immigrants. Blame the right people if blame has to be there.

              • Draco T Bastard

                No one’s blaming the immigrants.

              • Andre

                I’m not in the least blaming the young fella for making the choices he made to improve his life. He works hard, picks things up quickly, and he’ll be an asset to New Zealand should he choose to stay here.

                But at the same time, if he wasn’t available due to loose immigration requirements (ditto the recent immigrant who was the second choice), then the company would needed to have offered more secure conditions to get the interest of the suitable locals. Which IMO would have been a better outcome for NZ.

              • weka

                I’ll blame NZ’s immigration policy. I have friends that work in tourist towns and there is definitely a problem with the numbers of people from overseas who are prepared to work without adequate jobs security for lower wages than the people who are permanently resident there. Or there is straight out competition for the jobs. That’s a housing issue as well. I agree that there are multiple factors involved (eg speculation and housing), but let’s not pretend that there aren’t also issues with how NZ manages immigration.

                Peters is an arse in how he is handling this.

                • Once again the tourist town situation is structual not related to who is willing to do the jobs. If there were no immigrants do you really believe that the low wages and conditions would improve? No, because it is a structual problem relating to the neo this and capitalism that.

                  cheap unorganized labour is not because of immigration – the fatcats make it so, so they can make more profit

                  • weka

                    Yes, I do believe that the conditions would improve. If you don’t have a transient low wage population to draw on, then you use the locals. Much of the issue is to do with getting enough hours. If you can choose from a large population who don’t care because they’re in NZ for travel or fun but are happy to make some extra money to keep that going, then of course you can undercut wages. People who are permanent and need to pay rent every week of the year can’t compete with that.

                    That could be partially solved by legislating employment law and housing. But there is ultimately still an issue of too many people not enough jobs. I don’t think people with families to house and feed should be having to wait until the revolution comes in order to be able to make a decent living.

                    • so that isn’t an immigration issue it is a transient visitor issue here for fun and travel.

                    • weka

                      It’s to do with the kinds of visas immigration are giving out, and as far as I know that’s an immigration policy issue. The govt encourages people to live in NZ for 12 months (or 2 years from the UK) because they they will support the tourism industry in the ways I have described. There is an overlap with more conventional framings of economic migrants, but I’m not sure they are on different visas. The effects are the same.


                    • Craig H

                      You’re referring to Working Holiday Visas, and while we could curtail them, bear in mind that they were set up as reciprocal arrangements by way of government agreements (we currently offer these to 42 countries), so it’s not just a matter of Immigration NZ or the govt pulling the plug on them unilaterally. Also, most of them are capped at a certain number per year (varies from 50 – 1000).

                      NZers get quite upset when our access to similar schemes and other countries is threatened e.g. the Australian situation and problems in the UK, so this would be one of those ideas that sounds good right up until people discovered the consequences of doing it.

                    • weka

                      Is that 50 – 1000 per country? What’s the overall number do you know?

        • Reddelusion

          A demographer put the 125k in context this morning on the radio, of the 125k, 25k are kiwis ( can’t do nothing about that) 25k are high paying fee students (good for education and export sector), 25k are skilled immigrants filling skill gaps, the remaining 50k is before net outflows, thus this is simply dog whistle politics from Winston

      • Draco T Bastard 6.1.3

        Except that it is when we don’t build the infrastructure to support them. And we simply haven’t been doing that.

        We can’t just let people in hoping it will be all right. It won’t be and a lot of what we’re seeing in increasing poverty and other decreasing social stats is due to the rampant import of people.

        Treasury warns of risk to jobs from immigration

        The Treasury warned that record levels of immigration could push New Zealanders out of low-skilled jobs, depress wages and increase housing pressures.

        Its views were contained in advice it gave to ministers.

        In December, Treasury advised Finance Minister Bill English to discuss “trade-offs” in immigration policy changes with ministerial colleagues.

        Migrants were increasingly working in low-wage industries where there is no strong evidence of a skills shortage, Treasury noted in a briefing, released under the Official Information Act.

        Yep, even the neo-liberals in Treasury have finally realised that there’s a cost to importing people willy-nillly.

      • Johan 6.1.4

        You must be one blind person or just an ACT/National supporter.

        • marty mars

          your binary is exposed – put it away please

          • Johan

            If you can’t stand the heat get out of the kitchen Tory Troll;-))))

            • marty mars

              No YOU are the tory troll you tory troll you – notice trollister I didn’t cap your first letters – you don’t fucken deserve capitals – you deserve small letters like the small (in every department smirk smirk) tory troll you are – just a stirrer, an agent provocateur – sent by the tory trollmasters to troll from a tory perspective – you disgust me tt, I produce spittle on your tt habits. Begone I say or I’ll set the fucken hounds on you!!!

              • North

                That’s the wierdest I’ve heard this century…….Marty Mars is a Tory Troll !??!!? With caps no less. Gonna
                bottle that and sell it.

                [Yep, weird all right. Clearly, neither Marty or Johan are Tories, nor trolls. So let’s pack it in, OK, guys? TRP]

      • WILD KATIPO 6.1.5

        Aw c’mon… Winston’s cool!

        And him and Marc Bolan have a lot in common – they’re groover’s !!!

        So next time you think of Winnie – think of this song.


  7. Anne 7

    Yes. Winnie’s doing a Trump!

    • Enough is Enough 7.1

      I absolutely agree Anne.

      Winston will be studying Trump’s success closely.

      His populist anti-immigration, anti Islam rhetoric is almost identical. And is disgusting in the extreme.

      • Johan 7.1.1

        What BS nonsense, desperate tactics from the Right Wing. I haven’t laughed so much for months. John Key going down the tube, hello wake up;-)))))

        • marty mars

          lol – yeah EiE you goddamn right winger how dare you pretend to be left wing for the years you have been commenting – the truth is out now 🙂

          • Johan

            marty mars on medication or worse something else;-)))
            BS comment from someone who pretends to know something but in reality knows nothing. I have always cast my votes for the good people of the Left, never given my votes and support to the greedies, who are adamant at destroying our welfare state.

            • marty mars

              yawn you’re boring now ttjohan – you’ve never voted in your life – tell the fucken truth ttjohan – you are a greedy and YOU want to destroy everything the left have build – go back to your ttmasters ttjohan – go back and tell them their plan failed – there will be no red wedding (GoT reference – may be past your bedtime – quite good show though) here tonight. and take your ;)))))) with you

        • Hanswurst

          If Key goes down the tubes because he’s letting in too many migrants, he will be gone for all the wrong reasons, and there is a real risk that the next government will oversee our society’s going backwards with respect to race relations, cultural diversity and openness to ideas from the rest of the world. Toppling the current government is important, but it can’t be seen as an end in itself.

      • Jamie 7.1.2

        Winston Peters – The only politician with the bollocks to say something

        “The following analysis of the European situation by Julian Langness is drawn from the pattern of events that other recent failed states, such as Lebanon, the Balkans, and Afghanistan, have followed. The entire projection can be found at Counter-Currents Publishing. Keep this in mind when the effeminate present you with a treacherous vision of mercy, one that emphasises feelings over the good of their own people. They are promoting war and rape and suffering on an unimaginable level.

        Sweden Burns to the Ground


        Hypothetical Scenario Involving the Outbreak of Violence In Europe
        Date: Summer 20xx (this could be 2016, 2019, 2024, etc. . . .)

        1.Increased friction between the Swedish state and immigrants has enflamed tensions throughout the country. Malmö begins seeing increasing immigrant on native violence of a level previously unknown. Further, the violence has become a cultural phenomenon or purposeful “Intifada” similar to the “Days of Rage” in Palestine. Swedish women are raped openly in the streets. Swedish men are attacked regularly. The police force in Malmö is on the brink of collapsing. Their operations are increasingly militarized as any form of regular policing is impossible. The immigrant communities have progressed completely out of government control, short of tactical incursions by government forces necessitating large numbers of police and riot troops with military vehicles.
        2.White flight out of Malmö and the surrounding areas has left the city devoid of the personnel needed for it to function. There are massive shortages of teachers, medical personnel, firefighters, and EMT’s. Government services increasingly exist in name only. Police officers must be bussed in from neighboring areas. The justice system is collapsing and the judicial system has fully collapsed. The first hints of 4GW crime begin appearing, such as kidnappings and tolls to travel through certain areas.
        3.Native Swedish vigilante violence begins as chaos escalates. There are multiple shootings of Muslim men. Some involve self-defense, others offer unclear motives and appear to be politically or “racially” motivated. Middle-Eastern restaurants are burned to the ground. Refugee centers are burned and shot up.
        4.The increasingly isolated Swedish government, massively threatened by the destabilization of society, begins violently clamping down on free speech. Political “hate speech” on the internet is prosecuted vigorously. Right-wing anti-immigrant groups are attacked and shut down.
        5.With Malmö in state of insurrection and chaos, and calls for violence from Muslims across Europe, Denmark completely seals off the Øresund Bridge and fully militarizes their border with Sweden. They further clamp down on civil liberties of Muslims in Denmark, afraid the crisis will spread.
        6.The Swedish government outlaws the Sweden Democrats, who, despite widespread support among ethnic Swedes, still have not taken power because of the ever-increasing number of foreign born immigrants being hastily granted citizenship and voting rights. Sweden Democrat supporters march in the streets and there are acts of violence and vandalism against representations of the government and against the immigrant community.
        7.Ethnic violence escalates in Stockholm and Gothenburg. There are riots in heavily immigrant areas. Massive nightly car burnings occur, along with a number of homicides. The government attempts Martial Law as the two cities becomes increasingly Balkanized.
        8.In addition to the vanguard of small-scale native Swedish vigilante groups that have sprung up, larger and slightly more mainstream self-defense militias begin expanding and arming themselves, despite government attempts to violently crack down on them. These are made up of men with relevant experience in law enforcement, the military, hunting, etc., and represent a “normalization” of vigilantism.
        9.Government legitimacy disappears as coalition government starts to crumble. Events from Sweden begin to appear as front-page news on a daily basis throughout Europe.
        10.As violence between Swedish militias and immigrant gangs escalates, first trickles of external funding begin to appear for Preservationist groups/militias (most likely from either Denmark, Poland, Russia, Finland, or any combination of the above). Funding likewise grows for increasingly organized Islamist/immigrant groups. Saudi Arabia and other Gulf nations responsible.
        11.Despite likely Danish funding of preservationist elements within Sweden, Denmark also continues attempting to prop up mainstream Swedish government, afraid of mass spillover should government fall and anarchy increase.
        12.As Malmö becomes 100% Muslim-controlled due to massive white flight and the inability of security system to maintain order, and as violence grows throughout country, the national government topples.
        13.Killings are occurring every day; Preservationist militias are patrolling streets; Muslim gangs make incursions into native areas and carry out killings; suicide bombings begin to occur.
        14.The vastly overstretched Swedish police force and the “cosmetic” Swedish military collapse.
        15.Preservationist militia begin taking over Swedish Army depots and bases and arming themselves.
        16.Immigrant gangs and Islamists begin doing same in Malmö and other heavily Muslim areas.
        17.The EU, hamstrung by political impotence and infighting and having massive problems of its own, is largely powerless to act.
        18.Full-scale 4GW fighting expands between Preservationist militias and Muslim gangs/organizations. Fighting is fiercest in medium-sized towns in southern half of country, because these areas are not homogeneous like in the ghettoized suburbs. Thousands are killed as each side struggles to maintain control over neighborhoods and areas. As in Afghanistan and Lebanon, territory is fluid and some areas change sides on an almost constant basis as the fighting escalates.
        19.Widespread atrocities are committed by both sides, just as they are in almost all conflicts. Hundreds of Muslims at a time are slaughtered by Swedes and buried in mass graves, just like in the Balkans. Swedish men, women, and children are murdered and often beheaded. Other Swedes are found dismembered and tortured to death. Young Swedish girls are abducted and kept as sex slaves by local commanders, just as Russian girls in Chechnya were in the 1990s. First real military weaponry begins to be used, including mortars, missile launchers, etc.
        20.Native Swedish refugees attempt to flee country in large numbers; Norwegian and Finnish governments allow them in. Muslim refugees are prohibited, and large numbers of Muslims eke out existence in now war-torn suburbs, often without heat or utilities.
        21.Eventually troops from neighboring European countries join fighting on behalf of Preservationist militias. The original Swedish government has ceased to exist. Numerous left-wing politicians have been executed as traitors. Heavy fighting continues. Muslims in the far south are pushed back into Malmö and contained. Fighting continues in other areas of the country.”

    • mikes 7.2

      You man Trump’s doing a Winnie.

      Winston has been in the game for much much longer than trump.

      • Anne 7.2.1

        True. Muldoon saw a kindred spirit and taught him the game in the 1970s and early 80s.

  8. Enviro Gal 8

    That is an unfair and trite comment Anne

    • Anne 8.2

      No it’s not. It’s the truth. I don’t think Winnie is very happy about the fact Lab. and the Greens have been hogging all the limelight lately. Having said that I don’t dislike him. In fact I hope he ends up joining a Lab/Green coalition govt.

      • Anne 8.2.1

        Oh and btw Enviro Gal I was replying to the question posed by TRP:

        Is it time for a taihoa on immigration or is Winston just doing a Trump?

        Well it’s a bit of both but he is primarily using it to “do a Trump”.

  9. Colonial Viper 9

    Clever move by Winnie setting the agenda. A brilliant play in both conservative and liberal directions – at the same time. And which simultaneously looks like it will sort out Auckland’s housing issues in a more real way than either Labour or National are willing to commit to.

    The slashing of monied immigrants from China and elsewhere into Auckland, which is a step Key would never do, and Labour will hint is a problem for Auckland house prices but never actually act upon.

    Little’s centre of the road approach will however resonate well with those voters who think that the country is generally on the right track albeit needing some management reviews and adjustment of details here and there.

    Winston has released election policy early because he knows it will take time to percolate through the electorate. And of course it is strong policy that neither Labour or National could ever steal or copy. Peters has just won an extra 50,000 regional votes with the stroke of a pen, plus the votes of Auckland first home buyers.

    NZF has a chance of exceeding the Green vote 2017 if they keep this up.

    • BM 9.1

      Peters will get plenty of traction with this, especially amongst the elderly and rural parts of NZ.

      A lot of these people are pig ignorant racists and he’ll tap that vein of xenophobia for all it’s worth.

      He’s going to take a chunk of National that’s for sure, but only if he partners with National, that’s where the discontent is, people not happy with the way Nationals taking the country, but they don’t want Labour and the Greens they just want National to get back on track.

      For many they hope Peters may be the person who does that.

      • Colonial Viper 9.1.1

        I think you may be underestimating the appeal of this policy.

        Particularly to those Auckland home buyers who are sick of going to auctions trying to find a first home for themselves – or for their sons or daughters – who keep seeing Chinese bidders pushing the bid up $50K $75K $100K $125K up and up well above what even the local top 10% can afford.

        Especially amongst the elderly and rural parts of NZ. A lot of these people are pig ignorant racists and he’ll tap that vein of xenophobia for all it’s worth.

        Everyone has prejudices. You point out the elderly and rural NZ as being ignorant racists. That’s your prejudice, for example. Maybe you should spend more time with middle aged upper middle class white folk on the North Shore and their racist talk about the inhabitants of South Auckland. What category would you put them in – elderly or rural?

      • Keith 9.1.2

        It’s not racism and your comments are exactly what the National Party are hoping for and how the race card protects the system.

        These people are, in a number of cases, cheap exploitable labour, especially abused under the “Student” visa category. They have a carrot of residency dangled under their noses but only if they are a good boy or girl and play the dirty little game and say nothing. I know this this to be a fact.

        If National really did want to lower unemployment, improve wages and conditions, improve the chances for the working poor AND do something about the housing crisis for New Zealanders they would turn the tap right down on immigration. But they won’t because the few are doing too bloody well out of this, their most fundamental unofficial policy! And to do so would pull the facade down on the real unpleasantness that is propping up our growth.

    • AB 9.2

      Agree – skills should mean real skills – mostly technical. Having money and making vague commitments about ‘investing’ it is not a skill.
      Also I don’t think we can totally dismiss as racist concerns that people may have about rapid cultural change and the attitudes of immigrants. For example – what is the attitude of immigrants to our natural environment – do they see it as a taonga or a resource to be strip-mined?

      • marty mars 9.2.1

        What do current citizens think of the environment? Not much if the green vote, shitty rivers, and so forth are any gauge.

        • Johan

          Still the Tory Troll trying desperately to place a wedge between Labour and the Greens.
          National vs Labour/Greens now we have a contest;-)))

          • marty mars

            mate you forgot the ‘I’m’ between ‘still’ and ‘the’ – come fucking on pull yourself together bubs

            • Johan

              Such desperate sentiments, you try pulling yourself together;-))))

              • the wee thingy at the end of your sentences looks idiotic – are you sure that is the gravitas your persona is trying to pull off or is it someone with a beard – cos that would be sort of witty – note the ‘sort of’ bit 🙂 🙂 🙂

  10. Nick 10

    Isn’t Winston just saying that NZF figure as being at one end of the spectrum, (National being at the other)…. But I think he would more than settle for a middle ground,where Labour are. Anyway, Someone has to get some media cut through to wake up the people to the reasons for the situation …..

  11. Shona 11

    Winston isn’t doing and saying anything he hasn’ t always said or done.
    Trump is an American phenomenon. A vile, clumsy and exceptionally moronic one at that. And if Trump wins it will be because the USA deserves him.
    Winston will finally get listened to and a long overdue planned immigration policy will be the result. NZ is not America.
    Winston will keep on gaining support if for no other policy than this one. And NZ deserves more NZ First MP’s just like the USA deserves a fuckw*t like Trump.
    Our elected representatives are an accurate reflection of our society. We have done this to ourselves.

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      Geeezus Trump is no angel but to suggest he is not highly capable and highly intelligent…is moronic. And may be if the Left really were as intellectually superior as it likes to think it is, it could stop losing to the “morons.”

  12. Janet 12

    The people who have changed the culture and values of our country are the National and Act parties, and their toadies, Dunne and the duchessed Maori Party.

    • M. Gray 12.1

      2 parties that got very little of the NZ party vote and seem to have too much power and say are Act and UF time to get rid of these two parasites I mean parties

      • DavidC 12.1.1

        and yet both UF and ACT have a candidate capable of winning an electorate, something the Green party is incapable of. Well since 1999 anyway.

  13. Enviro Gal 13

    Some of the comments on this blog are becoming shallow [with little intelligent thought]
    @marty mars
    Immigration might not be the cause alone of the big increase in poverty and homelessness in Auckland
    but how are you going to assert that it is not a factor in the shortage of housing in Auckland ?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1

      It isn’t the cause of poverty and homelessness at all. The reason for the housing crisis is the National Party’s complete lack of planning, forethought or competence, and no amount of immigration policy is ever going to fix that.

    • marty mars 13.2

      Easily – because it isn’t. It is a good scapegoat though and vote catcher for blamers who are looking for power.

    • Karen 13.3

      Yes of course increased immigration is a factor in the rise in house prices, but it is just one factor of many.

      The increase in poverty is due to the policies of successive governments, in particular those of the 1980s and 1990s and the current government.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 13.3.1

        When all those factors are considered as a whole, it becomes apparent that what’s missing is forethought planning and competence at a governmental level.

        Factors are always with us, bless them. Take xenophobia, for example.

    • Colonial Viper 13.4

      The Left is trying to pretend that Auckland’s population increasing by more than 30,000 per year is somehow not a factor in Auckland’s housing crisis.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 13.4.1

        Make the immigration rate zero, it’ll do nothing whatsoever to fix the complete lack of forethought planning and competence, no matter how much it panders to xenophobes.

        • Colonial Viper

          Geeezus mate, do you think the rest of the country is as one eyed?

          If the Helen Clark government had applied “forethought, planning and competence” to the Auckland housing situation while in power between 1999 and 2008, the city would have been reaping the benefits of that “forethought, planning and competence” for 5 to 10 years (and more) after Labour lost the Treasury Benches as the social housing, social apartment blocks and other accommodation projects Labour had kicked off were completed.

          But her Government didn’t and National has simply continued and worsened the same.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Which makes pandering to xenophobes even more useless and wrong.

            • Colonial Viper

              Chinese sounding last names are making housing unaffordable for Kiwis.

              So which party is “pandering to xenophobia”?

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Fuck knows why you expect a Green voter to defend the party you’re a member of. Your chip, your shoulder.

                • Colonial Viper

                  The Greens just signed an MOU with that party, btw. And you supported that.

                  Winston, in the RNZ link at the start of this post, also says that he doesn’t think that MOU will result in anything worthwhile.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Sorry, I wasn’t clear: I have no interest in your personal issues with your party. Discussions between us where you insist on displaying them will quickly fall to derision and contempt.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Fuck discussing with you, a jumped up but declining intellect. But I’m not above doing you a favour. Now we can both be happier.

              • Johan

                Especially when these home owners are non-resident investors.

          • Keith

            Its 2016 and nearly 8 long years after National were elected and blaming Labour for what is unfolding now is sad, wrong and so National. Who the fuck knows what Helen Clark shoulda woulda coulda done, she quite simply has not been there to do or change a thing. I do not recall this fucked up immigration policy from Labour.

            Would the Nats have created Kiwirail, no, have they have added to the state housing pool, no, have they funded government departments properly, no. I know this as National are in government not Labour.

            But one thing I am damn certain of, Labour would not have boarded up state houses and sold them off to the highest bidder and they would not be quietly presiding over this clusterfuck we are all experiencing in 2016!

            • Colonial Viper

              All I am saying is that if Labour had put plans in place 2006/2007/2008 we would have seen a big stream of social housing and social apartments come on line in the 5+ years after their term ended.

              Just like the rail that they had planned while in Government.

        • marty mars

          Exactly – it is a red herring that obscures deliberately the real causes.

          • Colonial Viper

            The “Left” used to be hinged in physical reality. Auckland’s population is growing by 30,000 to 40,000 per year. That requires up to 20,000 new accommodation units to be built just to keep up.

            It’s not happening.

            How is this hard to understand, and how can people deny that it is a major factor – amongst others – in Auckland’s housing shortage?

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Whereas the cause is a complete lack of planning etc, during which the number of new houses required to keep pace with population growth might even have been considered.

              That would require competence and forethought but.

              Scapegoating immigrants is pretty low considering it’s the people who live here who are responsible for government policy.

              • Colonial Viper

                Read my comment about Labour 5’s lack of “competence and planning” which has led to this crisis developing.

                If Helen Clark’s government had applied “competence and planning” around Auckland’s housing crisis we would have been seeing the social housing and social apartment projects she started being completed over the last few years.

                Never happened of course because the Clark government didn’t apply the “competence and planning” to this problem that you are so keen on.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  I read your comment and I thought “so what?”

                  Other than the fact that you agree with me that a lack of planning and competence is the problem, what’s your point? That you hate the Labour Party. Which you’re still a member of, eh.

                  Labour did it too is not a reason to pander to xenophobes. Did you read that?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Labour did it too is not a reason to pander to xenophobes. Did you read that?

                    You’ve forgotten the Labour “Chinese sounding last names” strategy last year already?

                • Reddelusion

                  I agree Cv, the 3 year political cycle does Auckland a disservice re long term planning Auckland housing probelm is a lack of infrastructure ahead of the game, skilled resource shortage, a lack of long term and short them funding strategies and land availability, This is not solely a national problem but a lack of governance by central and local government over many years

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    a lack of infrastructure ahead of the game.

                    We’ve got six and half years of land planned for, infrastructure in the ground and ready to go. Government themselves have got more than 20 special housing areas that belong to Housing New Zealand that are ready to go.

                    “There’s no shortage of places to build. Our question to government would be, perhaps you just need to get on with it.”

                    Penny Hulse on RNZ. Will you keep on telling this lie: after all it suits your entire false narrative.

                    • Reddelusion

                      Land yes, but Parks , schools, roads, sewage, water all ready to go ( really) builder and tradies standing around twiddling their thumbs, all ready to go

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      What part of “infrastructure in the ground” are you confused by?

                      The rest of your little Gish gallop has no relevance, other than the picture of you clutching at straws it invokes.

                    • Reddelusion []

                      Yes fkwit

                • Visubversa

                  Except they did. Labour passed the Local Government (Auckland) Amendment Act to better co-ordinate Land Use and Transport in greater Auckland. This enabled several Councils to change their District Plans to re-zone land for housing. The land between the old Hobsonville Road and the new Motorway for example. Labour convened the Royal Commission on Auckland governance – and we know what happened to that once the NACTs got in.

                  The Auckland housing crisis has a lot of parts to it, many building firms went under in the wake of the GFC and there was a dramtic downturn in housing construction in those years. A lot of the second tier lenders that big developers relied on also vanished.
                  The changes to immigration to make it easier for buisiness migrants has had a major effect – lots of dirty money sloshing around needing laundering through our property market means that the prices were driven up. This did not bother the buyers – they want to spend that money as fast as possible. The NACT governmnt were responsible for that.

                  There are whole streets around Albany where you hardly see a single non-Chinese face, either on the street or building the houses.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    OK Labour changed some laws letting Councils do things differently.


                    What was needed though was a hundred thousand new affordable accommodation units, not wordsmithing regulations.

                    The Auckland housing crisis has a lot of parts to it, many building firms went under in the wake of the GFC and there was a dramtic downturn in housing construction in those years. A lot of the second tier lenders that big developers relied on also vanished.

                    I appreciate your detailed analysis, but this would also suggest that its not all National’s fault.

                    • Visubversa

                      No – either they did not see it coming when they should have seen it and they did nothing, or they saw it and did not care, so they did nothing. Labour built state houses, not perhaps as many as you would want, but more than the NACTs, and they were not flogging them off either.

                    • lprent

                      The biggest thing that slowed down building in Auckland was the slowdown due to creating Rodney Hide’s hard to get operational SuperShitty in 2010. It massively slowed all infrastructure and planning in Auckland until last year. The council had to take about 15 versions of local growth and try to push them into a cohesive commonality. That was a requirement of the Auckland City legislation and the resulting unitary plan will finally finalise this year.

                      The uncertainty of the forward direction of Auckland City, especially with the National idiots in Wellington trying to sabotage it, plus the massive rebuild in Auckland on leaky buildings didn’t provide a great environment for the risk taking that developers and builders undertake. Not to mention the level of building work that went on in Christchurch sucking off builders and capital.

                      The presentation of the proposed unitary plan and the final reluctant acceptance of the CRL by that National laggards last year triggered a lot of long delayed brownfield building projects to start all around the city. It gave some certainty to where people will want to be housed. That wasn’t in the periphery, where National hasn’t been putting in the transport systems, but in the existing city where transport systems already exist.

              • Draco T Bastard

                So, basically, what you you and MM are arguing for is that we continue with the incompetence and lack of forethought?

                • For me I think that we don’t want to add more incompetence to that which is already there. You’re a baby and bathwater type I prefer just the bathwater to be biffed.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    For me I think that we don’t want to add more incompetence to that which is already there.

                    The current rate of immigration is part and parcel of the incompetence that OAB rails against. You’re arguing that we should keep it.

                    You’re a baby and bathwater type I prefer just the bathwater to be biffed.

                    And out come the ad hominems.

            • marty mars

              You are simply confusing symptoms with causes.

    • lprent 13.5

      Read the policy. We aren’t nearly as interested in “intelligent thought” as we are in “robust debate”. There are limits of course.

      However one of those limits is to address me as the sysop of the site and call me “shallow”, which is what you do when you address anything to the site in general.

      I often ban for months for that level of personal disrespect. I’d suggest that you address yourself to individuals other than myself if you want to continue commenting.

      Incidentially, if you had a brain in you head that you actually exercised, the reasons for this policy would be evident.

  14. The record levels of immigration are helping prop up the economy…

    Therein lies part of the problem. What’s keeping the country’s growth in positive numbers is mostly the Chch rebuild and immigration – reduce immigration, and suddenly the current government no longer gets to pretend it’s competent. Why would they let that happen? A horrendous property bubble in Auckland is a small price to pay for positive growth numbers, if you’re the kind of weasels sitting round the Cabinet table.

    It’s been said by some that immigrants will do jobs Kiwis won’t and to an extent that’s true. However, that’s possibly because Kiwis don’t want to be exploited on minimum wage.

    That’s definitely because NZers don’t want to be exploited on the minimum wage. According to the right-wingers, we should let the market sort this kind of thing out, and the market says that if people won’t take jobs at the pay and conditions you’re offering, it means your pay and conditions aren’t good enough. Beating the market by exploiting desperate Third Worlders shouldn’t be an available option, any more than beating the market for expensive cars by stealing them should be.

  15. Olwyn 15

    It’s been said by some that immigrants will do jobs Kiwis won’t and to an extent that’s true. However, that’s possibly because Kiwis don’t want to be exploited on minimum wage.

    This pertains to NZ being a high-cost, low-wage country. Just as the farmer is at the mercy of fluctuating prices and the banks, the NZ worker is faced with the gulf between what the farmer judges he can pay a worker, and what it costs to live in NZ. Foreign workers are ostensibly able to live in barrack-like arrangements and maintain their families by sending their minimum wage pay home to cheaper places, where it comes closer to matching a family’s needs. That said, I suspect that many of them are under the thumb of employment agencies who treat them as slaves. But even sticking with the first of these options, New Zealanders cannot follow suit because the cost of living in NZ makes it impossible to maintain a family living here with cash earned elsewhere if you are not a highly paid professional. This leaves an increasing pool of New Zealanders unwelcome in NZ but with nowhere else to go, with English adding insult to injury by calling them “pretty bloody hopeless”. Something has to be done to curb this descent into economic apartheid without inviting alternate disasters, and Andrew Little’s suggestion does seem to point in the right general direction.

  16. Stuart Munro 16

    Immigration should not be a political football – it should have a steady and consistent policy that is tenable for decades. The current government has been boosting immigration because it conceals their comprehensive economic failure – this is a disservice to migrants who will subsequently be blamed for the negative impacts of the policy, as the Chinese were in Indonesia.

    Winston is correct in that current immigration policy is not in the public interest – but he is not always well informed, and sometimes does not explain well. Generally speaking Muslim migrants have not been problematic in NZ – but there are significant foreign funds supporting things like Muslim schools that may not be entirely desirable, in the same way that foreign tax criminals funding Cabinet Club are not entirely desirable.

    Winston tends to lump migrants into broad labels like Asian and not distinguish between them – but Chinese and Korean and Indian migrants are fairly different. One group is more involved in P. One group is more involved in systematic abuse of labour laws.

    A colour-blind immigration policy is not necessarily an absolute blessing – I favour weighting for good fit. The most convicted migrants are expat English – this should reduce their slice of any migrant quota. Somali refugees did not prove to be easy to resettle here, which is why more were not sought. The Tampa refugees assimilated brilliantly and many subsequently remigrated to countries with less neo-liberal munted economies. Intelligent governance responds to such data.

    • Draco T Bastard 16.1

      Immigration should not be a political football – it should have a steady and consistent policy that is tenable for decades.

      Is immigration tenable?
      How many people can NZ indefinitely sustain at a reasonable living standard?

      This is the big problem with immigration and the policies that the government throws up in that it never takes into account the very real physical needs required to sustain out society. They just look at the money and just looking at the money is no longer good enough.

      • Stuart Munro 16.1.1

        I imagine that, if properly researched, a desirable immigration rate of refugees + specialists + marriage + family reunification of probably 20-25k is quite manageable with planning. Much over 50k strains resources nationwide.

        Temp work visas and students who’ll become migrants blow the numbers out. Treasury have been pursuing a fucking stupid idea that increasing NZ’s population to 15 mill is somehow desirable – without extended costing of course because they are not even remotely professional:

        “Costing? What do you think we are, economists?”

        NZ has much to learn from migrants – but we learn slowly, like everyone else. Letting a migration fueled property bubble even begin was insane – Treasury & the neolibs again. Biarritz – famous property bubble – wallowed in recession afterward for centuries.

  17. save nz 17

    The triumph of the right is to reverse their earlier post war position of anti immigration to their new neoliberal position of excessive immigration, to increase consumption and commodify education and social spending, decrease and commodify tertiary education, decrease wages and working conditions and decrease salaries in the west.

    And to imply that anyone who call’s the right out on it, is racist. No surprises that the packing sheds are now lowered for cheaper labour to come in under our minimum wages with a donation to the National party. (Wait, didn’t immigrants have to be skilled to come to NZ so Kiwis could have those unskilled jobs?)

    Anyone in opposition querying that will be attacked no doubt, although the opposition still seem to be coming to terms with the reversal on right views on immigration and have had a very slow start catching on the implications – it used to be called scab labour now we have the 21st century version, blatant slavery and union busting (fishing ships in particular). Bonded labour and sex slaves also seem to be coming back.

    Prior to the National government it was completely normal to have conditions on immigration to preserve the culture and social spending of New Zealand. There were language tests and so forth, people had to make an effort to fit into the culture, not just get a passport, buy up assets and then go back home to work and get real wages outside of NZ.

    There is nothing wrong with immigration. It is the National partie’s excessive amount and the lack of care adding new people and money no questions asked, and there is nothing being invested into the country or the local people, the opposite – assets being sold off and locals prospects are diminished.

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      Well Peters understands the points you are making and he is taking a strong policy stance on this issue.

      He is partly able to do so because Andrew Little opened the debate last year on how rich people with Chinese-sounding last names are making Auckland housing unaffordable for ordinary Kiwis.

      As a recall quite a few commentators on The Standard backed Labour’s position that large numbers of rich Chinese house buyers were causing a major problem in the Auckland housing market.

      Don’t bitch now that Peters has decided to actually do something clear and decisive about it.

      • te reo putake 17.1.1

        Well, technically, that’s two related but separate arguments. Labour was talking about foreign speculation in the housing market and Winston is talking about people actually in the country.

        • Colonial Viper

          Winston is talking about greatly limiting the numbers of foreigners – presumably including rich Chinese – coming into NZ. These people are not already here in the country.

          • te reo putake

            Winston’s talking about both those who are here already (saying that the current rate is too high) and those yet to come (saying that the number needs to come down). As far as I know he’s not talking about sending the former home, however, he’s clearly keen to limit the latter.

            This is a separate matter to foreign based speculators exploiting us, which is what Labour spoke about.

            • Colonial Viper

              There might be some minute difference in there somewhere, but no one apart from Labour understands it.

              • Piss off, CV. You know the difference. If you don’t, you’re not bright enough to comment here, so I refer you back to the first sentence in this comment.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Under Winston’s scheme, “ethnic restaurants” might now have to start hiring more staff locally. A good thing for Kiwi workers, don’t you think.

                • Draco T Bastard


              • There might be some minute difference in there somewhere, but no one apart from Labour understands it.

                The difference between non-resident foreign speculators and immigrants is “minute” and no-one understands it? You’re down to peddling Farrar-style National-Party spin now – the Labour Party must have really pissed you off, but even taking that into account, peddling Nat spin is pretty low…

                • Colonial Viper

                  Anyone who has attended an Auckland house auction in the last couple of years knows that wealthy Chinese rolling up in person, often with spouses and family members in tow, are strong bidders pushing property prices higher and higher.

                  And Winston knows this. And Winston has a plan to sort this out.

                  BTW has Labour declared that it will ban non resident foreign owners of NZ land? No, it’s sat on its arse after kicking up a racially biased stink.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    BTW has Labour declared that it will ban non resident foreign owners of NZ land? No, it’s sat on its arse after kicking up a racially biased stink.

                    Well, they did say that they would restrict it which is better than the present open policy.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      “restrict it”?

                      Just meaningless PR words until you see the fine print, which knowing Labour will be convoluted and full of outs.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I see Labour still trying to keep the neo-liberals (i.e, National and Act) happy while putting in place mild restrictions to keep the populace happy. This, inevitably, won’t work. As you say, we need a complete ban on foreign ownership and not just on housing but across the board.

                      They won’t do that. Not just yet. So all we’re left with is the minor restrictions that they will put in place until it becomes obvious that even that’s not enough.

                      I would like to see a massive ground swell demand a complete ban but I don’t see that happening. Not while the housing bubble is in full bloom and quite a few people are dependent upon it to keep their house.

      • save nz 17.1.2

        I’m bitching that the opposition have realised this too late, Winston has always been about immigration which is why he is rocketing in the polls.

        What annoys me is that Kiwis can see with their own eyes that their country is being sold off not just residential property, but farms, businesses and even educational places are up for sale under this neoliberalism and it is going to lead to division which should be avoided by a steady careful immigration policy. So even if you are pro immigration it should be obvious that rampant immigration is going to harm our country. The Greens see to be able to identify it from a DOC point of view (too many visitors are destroying natural environment) but not from a societal point of view.

        No point living off grid on your lifestyle block if your rates are high, you can’t collect water anymore, you do not have free health care or superannuation because some numptyies for 10 years artificially increased the population 1.5% per year and then borrowed for the infrastructure to fund it and then told off Kiwis for borrowing too much to buy their overpriced house and nobody pays taxes anymore because you don’t have too, in your 0% tax haven (for non residents only).

        In Auckland for example it is also stopping small business. The rents are so high for shops that people just can’t open them. It is the (possibly) Australian chains buying up a storm and putting out Kiwi businesses.

        For example, in Ponsonby one of the most expensive suburbs in Auckland one of the local shops was a bakers delight. The Asian owners (very nice) closed it about 1 year ago after not being able to make a go of it, since then it has been boarded up and empty. For over 1 year! Previously Ponsonby was full of artisan goods, young designers, artists, coffee shops, start up businesses, now it is full of chains like Pita Pit, Sushi etc and boarded up shops.

        The young local businesses are not there anymore, they can’t afford the rents. And whoever owns the shop clearly is not worried about it being vacant for such a long period of time.

        Not only are there no jobs, or houses, you can’t even open a shop anymore because of the high rents.

        • Colonial Viper

          Similar phenomenon to the USA where rates of new business creation and entrepreneurship have crashed through most of the country except in very specific areas.

      • Stuart Munro 17.1.3

        If Labour are really smart they’ll gazump him and go after domestic rentiers. Start big – more than ten properties? Clearly part of the problem.

    • Draco T Bastard 17.2

      It is the National partie’s excessive amount and the lack of care adding new people and money no questions asked

      National have made it worse over the last few years but it actually started back last century and the last labour led government also added to the problem under the delusional belief that more immigration is always good.

    • marty mars 18.1

      +1 will fall on deaf ears though

    • Cheers, Papa T. I thought for a while about whether taihoa was the right word in the right context. I reckon it’s pretty commonly understood to mean slow or delay what you are doing, so it fits the substance of the post pretty well.

  18. fisiani 19

    With our population becoming top heavy with retired people we have fewer and fewer working age to support them. Immigration of young people to NZ addresses that problem. It is simplistic and easy Dirty Politics to blame immigrants for every problem but immigrants are often returning Kiwis, entrepreneurs and people who want to have a better life for their families. Labour must not fall into the trap of following the loathsome Peters.

    • Stuart Munro 19.1

      If the RWNJ hadn’t munted the economy our young folk would marry earlier and have enough kids for that not to be a problem. So – shafted by the Gnats and then by wages depressed by migrant labour – in most countries the pitchforks, tar and feathers would’ve come out long ago.

      No the immigrants are not to blame – the stupid greedy criminal tax-evading wanker Gnat government are. Boiling in oil is too good for them – and not carbon neutral.

    • leftie 19.2

      Bollocks Fisiani.

  19. leftie 20

    High levels of immigration drives down wages, and most immigrants work below the minimum wage. It allows a government like John Key’s to enact anti worker/union legislation, that fuels the already fierce competition for jobs. And so, the cycle continues.

    • marty mars 20.1

      Yet all our bullshit gadgets come from countries where they exploit workers and use slavery. And the reason less jobs here? Cos there are less jobs, not enough profit and the structural aspects of capitalism.

    • fisiani 20.2

      Can you provide proof that MOST immigrants work BELOW the minimum wage? Are you trying to be serious?

      • leftie 20.2.1

        Are you being deliberately obtuse Fisiani?

        • fisiani

          Are you just trying to defend an indefensible post. Most immigrants are NOT paid below the minimum wage. If they are I’d be outraged. You made the claim so go on. Prove it!

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Fuck do you care about the minimum wage, Wormtongue?

            • fisiani

              Leftie made a ridiculous and undefensible claim. Stop playing the man and let him/her give a shred of evidence. I would be outraged if as leftie claims “MOST immigrants are paid BELOW the minimum wage. That would make headline news if it were true.

              • I’d suggest this is an argument that is a) hard to prove either way and b) boring. So, let’s move on to matters of substance, OK?

                If leftie had used ‘many’ instead of ‘most’ we wouldn’t be having this discussion, because the fact is that many migrant workers are paid below minimum wage, many are living in fear and many are being terribly exploited.

                That this is happening at all to any group of workers here in NZ, whether its many or most, is a crying shame. That’s the issue, not the quantum of those affected.

              • McFlock

                lol no it wouldn’t
                The court cases where employers are actually caught paying far below minimum wage barely get a mention.
                The seasonal workers who are paid with excessive “room and board” deducted barely get a mention.

                Your emphasis on the word “most” leaves a hell of a lot of wriggle room between “50%” and “doesn’t happen enough to affect local wages”.

                • leftie

                  Yes, true that McFlock. Not to mention migrant abuse in Christchurch. The cases that have gotten some headlines have been few, its not a good look, particularly for the National government, if the real truth was to be told.

              • Stuart Munro

                He inverted it – not most immigrants work below minimum, but most below minimum workers are immigrants.

              • leftie

                It is true. What world do you live in that you don’t know any immigrants Fisiani? Te Reo Putake and McFlock covered it nicely in their responses.

          • leftie

            This caught my eye today, and I thought of you and how in denial you are Fisiani, as I am sure that over the last few years you would have seen a headline of two or even an odd news report on TV about migrant exploitation, that is a lot more widespread, than people like you would care to admit, and more often than not, cases such as this and worse, often go unreported and justice is never served.

            “A family-owned south Auckland booze business which paid a worker the equivalent of $4 an hour and other staff under the table now has to fork over nearly $90,000.”

            <a href="https://nz.news.yahoo.com/top-stories/a/31822850/family-booze-chain-ordered-to-pay-87k/

  20. Molly 21

    During the Thatcher years I was living and working in the UK – a common history of many NZers.

    I took pride in the fact that NZers had a reputation for getting stuck in and getting the job done, and took a few jobs in different industries just to be employed and save up.

    Fixed costs were low, because I was renting half a room in a house. Survived on Beamish and student level cooking, and did not have to factor in maintenance of car, house or other. Very limited social conscience or awareness so did not contribute in any meaningful way to the neighbourhood or community I was living and enjoying life in.

    Only later did it occur to me, that my willingness to do low paid work under tenuous conditions contributed to a lowering of standards for those who were permanent residents in London. And whose responsibilities and long-term living requirements cost so much more than my drop-in, drop-out mode of residency.

    Immigration policies are policies that should be discussed openly.

    But the discussion is about the impact of policies – not about those who have taken the option of using those policies to come here. Recent NZers are the equivalent of NZers who for generations have been going to the UK to do their OE, without thought – like me – for the impact of those there. I did it for the travel and the experience – many coming here are doing it for long-term opportunity and improvement of their quality of life. That is an understandable and admirable motivation. They are not responsible for our political decisions that open their way here.

    Our politicians are responsible though, and the discussion needs to be about the costs and benefits and not directed at those who are now also NZers and who are have been welcomed with policy and incentives.

    Hard conversations are easily avoided, but are often the most important.

    (Not necessarily one that should be directed by NZ First though).

    • Draco T Bastard 21.1


    • leftie 21.2

      +1 Molly. The recruitment drives for “new immigrants” by so called “immigration consultants” in countries like India for example, is very big business indeed. There are people who are making a huge amount of money out of this.

  21. Draco T Bastard 22

    The record levels of immigration are helping prop up the economy,

    Are they?

    Can’t say that I’ve seen any proof of that. Sure, I’ve reasoned before that the government uses the growing population as a substitute for developing the economy. More people spend more and thus we have a higher GDP but our economy hasn’t developed any – just got bigger and not in ways that are sustainable.

    It’s probably time for an easing back on immigration numbers.

    It’s time for a complete ban on immigration. We need to take stock of who’s here and what we need to do to support them. We’ve let immigration run rampant and we now need to build the infrastructure to support the higher population.

    • Colonial Viper 22.1

      Well, Winston has proposed a 90% drop in immigration and most commentators here on The Standard seem to be condemning him for that.

      Fact is, Winston is more right than wrong. If people want Kiwi workers to have a fair go, we have to limit the supply of overseas labour willing to work in substandard conditions for substandard pay.

      I also think we need to raise refugee numbers by a couple of thousand, at the same time as substantially limiting immigration to just those people who are going to add real value to our country.

      Raising refugee numbers by a couple of thousand while slashing immigration numbers is the perfect combination.

      • Olwyn 22.1.1

        One danger that would attend a sudden 90% drop in immigration is the lack of even the basic framework for an alternative, which is why I lean more toward Little’s more incremental approach – provided of course, that Labour follows through on it. But I think that Winston’s bold stance has given him a very good starting point for post-election negotiations with either side, and has presented National with a serious challenge. If his immigration policy brings a lot of votes across from National to NZ first, as happened in Northland, then he is in the position to put force National’s hand – either they take his policies seriously or accept that they no longer represent a large part of their claimed constituency.

        • Colonial Viper

          I think you have correctly identified that this is primarily an election campaign ploy by Peters, while simultaneously positioning himself for post election negotiations.

          When it comes to actual policy implementation, I think he will probably soften his declared hard line on immigration numbers by quite a bit.

          Of course, he will blame the softening on having to come to an agreement with Labour (National).

          But for now, he grabs media time and he catches his political opponents on the hop, while setting the bar.

          In this sense, you can see the similarity between Peter’s ploy and the kind of things Trump has been doing to great effect in the media.

    • s y d 22.2

      immigration is being used as a political tool – a tool wielded to provide a number of outcomes:
      1. providing a ponzi growth model
      2. fuelling asset inflation and paper wealth
      3. a quid pro quo for trade (agriculture) access into our FTA ‘partners’
      4. adding National party votes (and donations) effectively topping up the required buffer to maintain the slight electoral advantage needed to form a government
      5. allowing mobile international labour to drive down and suppress local workers income and conditions
      6. providing an easy target for venting outrage and feelings of helplessness which should be directed instead at those responsible.
      7.allows those repsonsible to label anyone who suggests immigration has any impact on any of the above as a racist.

      Winston is aware of all this, he just uses number 6 as a rallying call to NZF.

      • Kiwiri 22.2.1

        Not just Winston. For number 6, there’s also the Chinese-sounding surnames shambles.

        • save nz

          There should be a proper register of identity including IRD and ethnicity and immigration status here on purchasing property. Apparently National eventually did a register but sounds like what ever they recorded was not clear at all and a screw up.

          How surprising.

          Anyone know if anyone was hit by speculator tax yet? Or do we not suffer from short term property speculation in NZ?

  22. Guerilla Surgeon 23

    Judging by the number of comments, we need to have a national discussion about immigration. Personally I think that filling the damn country up turns it into the place that everybody wants to get away from in the first place. But it’s ridiculous to suggest that people be tested on knowledge of New Zealand. Half the people in New Zealand probably wouldn’t pass any test on that subject. Just as many of the people of America can’t pass their citizenship test. Which is in fact not taken upon entry into the country but much later.

  23. Colonial Viper 24

    Anyone commenting here from the UK (or Ireland)? Could you make some remarks on how the EU has allowed a flood of low wage workers from former Soviet Bloc nations, Poland, Romania and the like, to flood into the UK and screw over low to mid skilled British workers and the working class in general, much to the joy of UK capitalists.

  24. whispering kate 25

    When students come in on a students visa it is presumed they have come here to complete their education and then go home again, didn’t they do that once upon a time, come here, educate themselves and go back to their homeland to apply those skills to improve their country of origin. Why are these students, on completion, allowed to apply for residency these days. They then get their parents overseas to fund them buying a house/houses here in Auckland and then the rest of the family come over to join them. Why don’t they close that loophole. This I know, as a young Chinese woman bought a home at auction in our street, promptly phoned her father in wherever and asked him to deposit the 1.1 million in a bank account for her – I presume that she got her family over as she was quite young and had a broker do the deal for her on site. We are just being laughed all the way to the bank here, stupid, ignorant and have no regard for our country and its citizens. By all means get in skilled migrants but more important we need a proper living wage, it is an insult to us that we are so low waged and high-priced – its no wonder people cannot buy a home or even eat decent food anymore. I don’t always agree with Winston and think he plays to the gallery too much, but for once he has brought about debate about this high immigration situation which is good.

    • greywarshark 25.1

      whispering kate

    • Johan 25.2

      Too many comments are just comments and lack direct evidence of what is really going on in our society. New immigrants have become skilful at ticking the gov’t boxes and circumventing the law. We are allowing unskilled workers into the country to settle for back-packers wages, and willing to take the abuse of bosses. New Zealand is an easy entry for many of these immigrants because they would not qualify to enter their preferred country eg England, Australia, Canada or USA.

  25. Your Average Voter 26

    If we can’t produce the number of houses then we need to cut back on the demand. It’s basic maths.

    Immigration is part of that mix. It’s not a magic bullet and it’s not racist. It’s part of the mix.

    At least Winston Peters is prepared to put a figure on it. Little, as usual, is trying to cover all his bases and ends up saying nothing. Yeah, nah, we’ll “manage” it. A definite maybe, sort of.

    Round one to Winnie!

    • cowboy 26.1

      Has anyone else noted the coincidence of Winston upping the immigration ante in the aftermath of the Labour/Green MOU?

      Too me this is both a pitch to his own base and a shot across Labour’s bow that he is an old school conservative and that hand holding with the Greens may be all well and good, but if they want his support there is a whole bucket load of dead rats that will need to be swallowed first.

  26. Foreign waka 27

    “There has to be an understanding of what this country’s values, laws and society is like. Sign up to a loyalty to New Zealand, to our flag, to our laws and to our beliefs. And our respect for other beliefs and above all respect for all people regardless of gender. “

    1/Sign up to a loyalty to NZ ? Even politician don’t have any – and no one will have loyalty if you are called a bloody foreigner go home etc… loyalty is something that grows over time. In fact, many foreign nationals I know of are most likely more loyal to NZ than some of the natives.
    2/To our flag? Really? You just about gave it up all together, what about that?
    A foreigner does not even think about the flag – it is what it is. The symbol of it, being part of the commonwealth – different connotation. Many will be surprised that it is infinitely easier to immigrate when you part of the commonwealth than not. This might explain that the majority of immigrants are from India, UK and returning NZlanders.
    3/Laws, that’s a given hands down – I have never come across someone immigrating and saying: Well, we can forget about the laws. If Immigration has let people in with such attitude that surely is part of their past records (criminals?) than some serious questions have to be asked.
    4/Our Beliefs – Please explain this first without corporate slogans.
    If this is meant to be in terms of religion or culture, does Mr Winston ask to shed ones entire being like a snake its skin? One can respect the belief of others but sign up to it?
    This leads straight to: “And our respect for other beliefs and above all respect for all people regardless of gender. “

    Yeah Right. Lets start counting the women enduring domestic violence, children being killed en mass, violence being promoted as OK etc…and the majority of that statistic concerns NZlanders.

  27. Incognito 28

    A very good post, thank you!

    Immigration is a double-edged sword; it has pros & cons and these should be properly investigated, debated, and managed. In short, we need a well-rounded flexible immigration policy that integrates well into areas of national and local socio-economic planning and policy.

    What is not helpful is to muddy the issue with emotive demagogic comments that are borderline Islamophobic as if tens of thousands of immigrants are wife-beating (male, obviously) Muslims who cannot wait to commit crimes here, burn our flag and burn down our institutions and cause traffic jams on Auckland Motorways by riding camels without a proper WOF or Rego and donkeys running red lights in Auckland CBD. Peters failed to mention that the SIS budget will have to be increased to deal with that exponentially-growing watch list of wannabe terrorists and (female, obviously) Jihadi brides.

    If this is all a (political) game to Peters then when & how will we know when the game is over and he gets serious?

    One of the things I like about Andrew Little but also the Greens is that they don’t play these kinds of risky games to lure voters. Call me naïve but the same could be said about Sanders and Corbyn; the Machiavellian style of politics has never been one of my favourites.

    The best chance to replace this Government with a more progressive one that won’t put the interests of the top 1% above that of the rest of the population and that will at least make an honest attempt at improving equality & fairness as well as at decreasing the negative impacts on the environment lies with NZLP, GP, and NZF as long as the latter can drop their redneck sloganeering and scaremongering.

    Feeding on people’s fears is more powerful than tapping into people’s greed, i.e. Peters versus Key, respectively – choose your poison at the next General Election.

    • Colonial Viper 28.1

      One of the things I like about Andrew Little but also the Greens is that they don’t play these kinds of risky games to lure voters.

      Chinese sounding last names.

      • Incognito 28.1.1

        I believe that was more Phil Twyford, wasn’t it? I’ll give you that it was a poor attempt to do some analysis but was it game play?

        In any case, where was the fear factor, that piece of irrelevancy just added to induce an emotive response? There wasn’t any to my knowledge.

    • Anne 28.2

      …emotive demagogic comments that are borderline Islamophobic as if tens of thousands of immigrants are wife-beating (male, obviously) Muslims who cannot wait to commit crimes here, burn our flag and burn down our institutions and cause traffic jams on Auckland Motorways by riding camels without a proper WOF or Rego and donkeys running red lights in Auckland CBD.

      The kind of image (exaggerated to make the point of course) Winston Peters was intending to create. I don’t think it is any coincidence he chose this weekend to do his grandstanding on the issue. His immediate response to the Lab/Green MOU was one of sour grapes. He was not a happy chappy. It was one way to deflect attention away from them and back on to himself?

      I have grudging respect for the man but when he indulges in this kind of modern day
      ‘reds under the beds’ tactic he starts to lose me. He learnt his trade at the feet of Muldoon of course.

      • Incognito 28.2.1

        Metaphors are a formidable weapon in the hands of someone who knows how to use them.

  28. Craig H 29

    One sizeable issue with lumping all work visas into the same boat is that there are somewhere around 30 subcategories of work visas, and even if we ignore the more esoteric ones like work visas for Pitcairn Islanders, what most people think of as work visas are the minority of the work visas issued.

    The main subcategories are Essential Skills, Work to Residence, Specific Purpose, Hort/Vit (e.g. RSE), Partnership, Study to Work and International/Humanitarian (mostly Working Holiday visas, but also includes visas agreed in various FTAs and things like work visas for victims of domestic violence and the Antarctic Programme).

    Essential Skills is the classic work visa – there’s a genuine job, the employer advertises and fails to find NZ citizens or residents, so takes the best migrant who applies, and that migrant applies for a work visa. The Long Term Skills Shortage List (LTSSL), Immediate Skills Shortage List (ISSL) and Canterbury Skills Shortage List (CSSL) come into play here, as local advertising is not required if a position is on a shortage list and the migrant meets the requirements of the list.

    Work to Residence is a narrower version of the above, but with the carrot of residency after 2 years. The vast majority of these are with Accredited Employers (most of NZ’s most well-known employers are accredited) or for positions on the LTSSL.

    Specific Purpose is usually for shorter term jobs (3-6 months is common), and not everything on there is something people would associate with work e.g. dance and music examiners or sports referees/judges. This is also where professional sportspeople and actors and other entertainment industry professionals visas are found.

    The RSE scheme is for short-term visas to mostly go to orchards in season, and then return home. While NZers can do the work on offer, it’s not that flash, doesn’t pay that well, and is often in rural locations which don’t attract NZers due to the lack of things to do.

    Partnership visas are usually open work visas (any employer, any location, any job – self-employment is permitted), and are for partners of NZers, partners of holders of work visas and partners of students. While not all students or work visa holders have partners, there will still be enough of them to impact employment opportunities for NZers.

    Study to work visas – once a student finishes their tertiary level course/degree (excludes ESOL), they usually qualify for an open work visa for 12 months to find a relevant job, and then a further work visa for 2 years to gain experience i.e. 3 years in total. In theory, this is plenty of time to obtain residence, although I gather it doesn’t always pan out…

    International/Humanitarian – mostly Working Holiday visas, as noted above. These are always open work visas, but have various other restrictions depending on our agreement with the relevant country. Duration varies from 6 months (e.g. Malaysia) to 2 years, although most are 12 months. Permanent employment is not permitted on any working holiday visa, and some countries also have the restriction of no more than 3 or 6 months employment with any one employer. The UK and Canadian schemes are for 2 years, but only allow a total of 12 months employment. Most have a numbers cap, anywhere between 50 and 1000, although some are unlimited.

  29. Bruce 30

    Significantly, nobody has pointed out that the “immigrants” being abuses in our horticulture, viticulture, and dairy industries are not immigrants per say. They are temporary workers who will never be granted citizenship.

    Also, many of the companies who employ workers from South East Asia have contractual arrangements with labour hire companies. New Zealand workers do not get a look in, ever, when they have arranged to buy x amount of slaves. And those companies can say they are not responsible or “don’t know” about their conditions outside their direct employment on the farm because they are contracted workers: a state of affairs that allows Bonita and other multinationals to continue to employ child labour, use chemicals that render men infertile, and so forth, without taking responsibility. Supply chain obfuscation. It’s happening in NZ. Government departments are involved. It’s a scandal. Will it ever see the light – the full story? Will the governments attacks on migrant labour activists ever be known? At least 4 are in exile right now following serious harassment from origin countries and the destination country (New Zealand). Probably not.

  30. John 31

    Employers and their political parties have always wanted to bring in large numbers of docile workers from poorer countries and in many parts of the world they succeeded (Fiji, West Indies, Guyana) Labour parties have always had to resist this trend in the interest of their constituencies. It is no surprise that a National government is keen on high immigration.

    I see the old world as overcrowded and have no desire to see New Zealand with a bigger population. I support Winston Peters on a substantial reduction to current numbers.

    I am also worried long term about large proportions of a future New Zealand population with different histories, beliefs and loyalties. Small numbers of immigrants are very desirable but at some point massive numbers of any immigrant group will cause the sort of problems we have seen in other parts of the world with ethnically mixed populations.

  31. John 32

    It seems that a lot of people didn’t understand the basis of the analysis of Chinese buyers of residential property in New Zealand. Any name (such as Lee) that could be Chinese or English was matched against numbers in another database which provided ethnic information and a percentage calculated, so that only (say) 50% of the people called Lee were registered as Chinese. The figure of around 35% of buyers being Chinese only confirmed what our friends in real estate agencies had been telling us and was well above the percentage of Chinese inhabitants. This was then a low figure for overseas buyers as there are obviously a lot from Australia and other countries.

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