Mi­gra­tion rules ‘mar­ginal’

Central Leader - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - HAMISH RUTHER­FORD

Rule changes aim­ing to give the Govern­ment greater con­trol over mi­gra­tion will have lit­tle or no im­pact on ar­rivals, econ­o­mists at one of New Zealand ma­jor banks warn.

On April 19 Im­mi­gra­tion Min­is­ter Michael Wood­house an­nounced a series of changes to work visa set­tings, in­clud­ing new pay band com­po­nents for skilled mi­grant visas.

Wood­house said the changes would ‘‘fur­ther con­trol the num­ber’’ of net mi­grants com­ing to New Zealand.

Af­ter con­sul­ta­tion, the new rules were set to come into ef­fect later in 2017, Wood­house said.

But ASB has made no changes to its pre­dic­tions as a re­sult of the an­nounce­ment.

It re­cently forecast that net mi­gra­tion would stay above 70,000 well into 2018 and stay at around 55,000 by the end of 2019, send­ing New Zealand’s pop­u­la­tion to 5 mil­lion.

ASB econ­o­mist Daniel Snow­den said the changes would make no dif­fer­ence to those com­ing in to New Zealand in the short term and in the medium and long term the change would be ‘‘at the mar­gin.’’

Longer term it was pos­si­ble that there would be some im­pact but the de­gree of change would only be able to be as­sessed once the changes were in force, Snow­den said.

‘‘It’s not go­ing to change the cur­rent pic­ture.’’

DASHA KUPRIENKO / FAIR­FAX NZ

Im­mi­gra­tion min­is­ter Michael Wood­house has an­nounced rule changes to mi­grant work visas.

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