Changes to NZ Immigration Quotas Announced

It looks like the National Govt is out to reduce the number of new migrants, yesterday they announced a tightening to NZ immigration quota numbers.

Under the changes, the higher end of the planning range for new residents over the next two years would be reduced from 100,000 to 95,000. Those coming to New Zealand under the skilled migrant category would have to have 160 points before getting residency, rather than 140. The number of people allowed entry under the family category would be more than halved from 5500 to 2000.There would be a temporary ban on applications under the parent category – which has allowed any parents with adult children who have residence in New Zealand to also apply.

Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse has temporarily closed the parent category to new applicants, saying he is concerned too many migrants are not honouring their sponsorship commitments. slack-imgs-comEvery year about 5500 parents of migrants come to New Zealand. About half who enter under the parent category are Chinese and around 20 percent Indian.

Mr Woodhouse said a review of the category was needed.”I have been concerned about the quality of some of the visa applications that have been received, the commitments that are made around sponsorship that haven’t been met, and I think it’s appropriate to pause while we review the category,” Mr Woodhouse said.”And that’s why we’ve reduced it and suspended applications at this time.” Michael Woodhouse said emergency support for the parents of migrants was costing tens of millions of dollars a year. Mr Woodhouse said migrant children who sponsored their parents to come to New Zealand had to have a minimum income of about $90,000 per couple, and had to make a commitment to support them.



In a article on the RNZ site by Jane Patterson RNZ Political Editor, Labour leader Andrew Little said the change was a “pretty big U-turn”, under pressure Read the full article here. “They’ve certainly had a go at me and others for some time that we shouldn’t be talking about immigration. Ever since the surge in immigration we’ve been saying that there are a growing number of issues and it became apparent this year that those issues were becoming acute.”

In a follow up article by Political Reporter Benedict Collins Radio New Zealand claims that the parents of people who have moved to New Zealand are being stopped from migrating here because they’re a multi-million dollar burden on taxpayers. Parents of migrants are able to move to New Zealand to be with their children, if they are able to sponsor them to be in the country.

“They are not eligible for normal income support for a period of time after they arrive, but nevertheless many of them have gone on to emergency support through the Ministry for Social Development and that suggests to me there is a problem – it’s costing taxpayers tens of millions of dollars a year.” Mr Woodhouse said another factor in closing the parent category was the strain being put on the health system. “Information that I’ve been given about the burden … on the health services that are considerably higher than other people of that age who are eligible for New Zealand public health services.”

“The temporary closure of the parent category is one of a number of immigration setting changes the government announced yesterday – all aimed at reducing the record number of migrants coming to the country. Under the changes, the higher end of the planning range for new residents over the next two years would be reduced from 100,000 to 95,000.

Those coming to New Zealand under the skilled migrant category would have to have 160 points before getting residency, rather than 140. Read the full article here. If you are concerned about your immigration status or need assistance applying for a visa please contact the QCL Immigration team for expert advice and good results.