Wellington, Oct 12 (IANS) The New Zealand government announced the next steps to fill workforce shortages on Wednesday, with the resuming of selections for two residence visa categories amid the global labour shortages.
The Skilled Migrant Category under the current settings has been resumed to help attract more workers, reports Xinhua news agency.
Its application ceased when the Covid-19 pandemic started more than two years ago.
Meanwhile, access to the Parent Category Visa has been restarted so as to increase the number of parent resident visas granted each year and reduce the income thresholds.
The category stopped in 2016.
The Skilled Migrant Category residence visa provides a pathway for retaining the majority of these much-needed skills in New Zealand permanently, Immigration Minister Michael Wood said.
The proposed changes which include a more simplified points system, will set a clear, fair and transparent eligibility threshold and offer several ways for people to demonstrate their skill level, Wood said.
The new system will improve processing times and there will be no cap on the number of people who can gain residence each year if they meet the skills threshold, the Minister said.
The reopening of the Parent Category Visa means more family reunifications, Wood said, adding that the number of this visa granted each year will also increase to 2,500 a year.