Specialists in Migration, Visas, and Overseas Recruitment

Posts tagged ‘Immigration’

New Zealand’s Welcome Mat for New Migrants

On 1  November 2015, a new policy came into place to attract new migrants to take up jobs in regional New Zealand.

‘Regional New Zealand’ means any place outside of the area covered by the Auckland Council (if you know Auckland, that means south of the Bombay Hills; and north just past Warkworth).

Additional Bonus Points

The new measure boosts the bonus points for skilled migrants applying for residence with a job offer outside Auckland – from 10 to 30 points.

And if you are applying under the business categories the points are doubled for entrepreneurs planning to set up businesses in the regions under the Entrepreneur Work Visa from 20 to 40 points.

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Why is New Zealand trying to attract people to locations outside of Auckland?

NZ’s Prime Minister says almost half of the 10,000 skilled migrants (and their families) who get residence each year move to the financial capital.

On the new policy, he says that “we want to balance that out a bit, by attracting more people into other parts of the country to help grow local economies”.

Migrants with offers for jobs in the regions will get extra points that will count towards the 100 they require to apply for residence.

However, they will need to commit to a region for at least 12 months – up from the current requirement of three months.

Business Opportunities

Mr Key has also unveiled changes to encourage entrepreneurs wanting to come to New Zealand to look for business opportunities in the regions. He said these changes will help spread the benefits of migration across the country – particularly in regions that are in greater need for workers, skills and investment.

 

NZ’s Immigration Changes – The Facts

For migrants:

  • Skilled migrants must reach a 100 point threshold to apply for residence – certain skills, industries, job offers and qualifications have a higher number of points attached to them
  • The bonus points for a job offer outside Auckland will increase from 10 to 30, therefore making it easier for them to apply
  • They will need to commit to a region for at least 12 months – up from the current three month requirement

Entrepreneurs:

  • An entrepreneur work visa was launched by the government last year to attract migrants who offer high-level business experience, capital and international connections
  • The extra points they get for setting up a business outside Auckland will double – from 20 to 40
  • Immigration New Zealand expects to approve up to 200 people in 2016 under the entrepreneur visa category

 

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Our view is that there are many fantastic,  challenging work opportunities in New Zealand – and the other main centres of Wellington, Christchurch, Queenstown, Tauranga and New Plymouth have a lot to offer.

Have a look in the jobs section of our Working In New Zealand website, to find something that suits you – or Like our Facebook page to keep up-to-date on New Zealand immigration and employment news.

 

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Immigration news round-up – October 2015

This month, Australia has recently launched a work and holiday arrangement with the People’s Republic of China and a new online visa label system. In Canada, there’s a mixed bag of news – from holds on some visa schemes to increased thresholds for other schemes. With all these changes, you could benefit from some Canadian visa advice – see who can help.

Plus in New Zealand there’s great news for overseas agricultural workers seeking seasonal work, plus some handy information about what you can and can’t bring into the country.

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Australia

Work and Holiday arrangement with the People’s Republic of China now live

As of 21 September 2015, up to 5,000 educated young Chinese nationals per year will be able to take advantage of the Work and Holiday visa arrangement between Australia and the People’s Republic of China.

The visa allows young Chinese nationals to have an extended holiday of up to 12 months in Australia, where they can undertake short-term work or study.

If you’re a Chinese national visit the Australian Embassy Beijing website to see if you’re eligible. Or find out more about Australia’s working holiday visa scheme.

Electronic visa record replaces passport labels

Traditionally when you received your Australian visa, a label was fixed into your passport. However, from 1 September 2015, you’re no longer able to request and pay for a visa label.

Instead, you access your visa record through the free Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) service. When you scan your passport at the airport, it’s linked automatically to this service and will let passport officials know your visa status.

This change reflects the Australian Government’s agenda to make their services more accessible and convenient to their clients through the provision of secure online services. VEVO is also efficient, reliable and provides real-time information about your visa.

This demonstrates Australia’s commitment to a overhauled, more streamlined and efficient visa system. More information is available at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

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Canada

Fast track your move to Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast, has just announced they will be able to fast track another 300 migrant workers who qualify under the express entry visa scheme that’s aimed at skilled workers.

It also means that Nova Scotia can nominate a total of 1,350 immigrants in 2015 under their provincial nominee program – almost double the previously allowed 700.

Nova Scotia remains a popular choice for skilled workers. In 2014, 2,670 newcomers settled in Nova Scotia – more people than have ever arrived in the past 10 years. Nova Scotia clearly offers a lot to would-be Canadians too – Statistics Canada show a retention rate of 71 per cent for immigrants that landed in Nova Scotia between 2007 and 2011.

If you’d like to take advantage of this fast track entry to Nova Scotia, take a look at some job opportunities – having a Canadian job offer may help your visa application. Or find out more about Nova Scotia’s nominee program.

Alberta and British Columbia release updates to their Provincial Nominee Programs

Canadian provinces manage their own visa schemes, called Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP). They all have their own rules, requirements and application thresholds. Alberta and British Columbia have both released updates to their programs:

Alberta

Due to a 10,000-application backlog, no new applications will be accepted to the Alberta Immigration Nominee Program until January 2016. However, if you’re interested in moving to Alberta, you can still apply through Canada’s express entry visa scheme.

British Columbia

Applications to the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) Skills Immigration stream and Express Entry stream have been put on hold until early 2016, due to application thresholds being met.

However, the Health Care Professional, Northeast Pilot Project and Entrepreneur Immigration streams will continue to accept applications.

Find out more about the BCPNP.

Skill shortages felt across Canada

A new survey by CareerBuilder.ca shows the impact of skill shortages on Canadian businesses:

  • 29% of survey respondents (almost three in 10 employers) have jobs that have been unfilled for 12 weeks or longer.
  • Three quarters of those respondents say this has negatively impacted upon their companies.
  • 31% of respondents said that un-fillable job openings lead to work not getting done – with 22% saying their companies are losing revenue.

With Canadian businesses feeling the pinch of a lack of skilled workers, this may be good news for skilled workers wanting to move to Canada – watch this space.

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New Zealand

Overseas agricultural contractors able to work easier in NZ

By 1 June 2016, seasonal workers from overseas could find it easier to temporarily work and live in New Zealand. A new visa deal means that rural contractors can more simply bring in overseas workers to help them over the busy summer harvest season.

Rural Contractors New Zealand (RCNZ) president Steve Levet estimates that the industry requires around 900 seasonal staff from overseas each year. In New Zealand there is a shortage of suitably skilled operators able to handle highly sophisticated machinery – so they look overseas for the skills they need.

These overseas workers – traditionally from Ireland and England – have good mechanical skills and are already up and running, meaning they don’t require extensive training.

About the new scheme

With a less rigorous process than what currently has to be followed, under the new scheme RCNZ would apply for Approval in Principle on behalf of all its members.

Then their members can apply online for a visa for the person they’re recruiting without having to meet any of the current requirements, which include having to advertise and going through Work and Income New Zealand first.

No further details are available at this stage – we’ll keep you updated. If you’re not already on our New Zealand mailing list, sign up [Link to: NZ newsletter sign up] and you’ll be the first to know.

Arriving in New Zealand – What you need to know

Whether you’re just visiting or are coming to New Zealand permanently, there are things you need to know.

For starters, do you need a visa? If you’re going on holiday, you might not – see if you need a visitor’s visa.  If you’d like to work and live in New Zealand, you will – read more about NZ visas.

What you can’t bring in to NZ

Pretty standard stuff, but this list includes:

  • Hazardous materials.
  • Endangered species (without a permit).
  • Weapons (without a permit).
  • Objectionable publications, including videos and digital images, or
  • Controlled drugs.

What you have to declare

New Zealand has very strict biosecurity rules – not surprisingly as any rogue flora or fauna can wreck havoc on its unique ecosystem. This means you have to declare the following items when you arrive:

  • Food of any kind – this even includes any food, especially fruit, you might have picked up on the plane or coming through duty free.
  • Plants or parts of plants (alive or dead).
  • Animals (alive or dead) or their products.
  • Equipment used with animals.
  • Camping gear, golf clubs and used bicycles – even muddy walking boots.
  • Biological specimens.

Anything you declare will be examined to check it’s ok to bring into NZ. This may include it being cleaned or treated before being allowed in.

The fines for not declaring any of the above are very high – and not worth the risk.

For more information about what you can (and can’t) bring in New Zealand, visit the New Zealand Government website.

Migration to New Zealand reaching its peak

New Zealand has always been a popular choice for skilled international workers but now, finally, the figures seem to be nearing their peak. A recent report by Westpac, a NZ bank, shows that migration to NZ is slowing.

One reason that could be behind this is the approval process for a resident visa, which favours applicants who have a job offer in New Zealand. Another is that NZ’s residence approval targets remain at 45,000 – 50,000 a year, which simply has not kept up with the demand.

Finally, Westpac estimated that Auckland (prime location of choice for most migrant workers) is not keeping up with the housing demand, which is under pressure from both migrant arrival and natural occupant increase.

So, if you’re thinking of coming to New Zealand, make sure you consider other parts of the country before you make the move.  It’s not impossible to get your metaphorical foot in the door in Auckland, but making sure you’ve ticked key boxes (like getting a job prior) will help you get ahead.

Photos from Working International Expo Manchester – 17-18 October 2015

Our Manchester event this weekend (17-18 October 2015) marked our final expo in the UK for 2015.  The quality of candidates over the weekend was fantastic – and we’re looking forward to seeing Manchester (and London) again in March 2016.

Exhibitors were very impressed with the people they met in Manchester.

Construction workers and senior construction managers required for large builds in NZ.

Construction workers and senior construction managers required for large builds in NZ.

Nursing jobs available here in Melbourne and Victoria.

Nursing jobs available here in Melbourne and Victoria.

Get help with your move to OZ from locals.

Get help with your move to OZ from locals.

A very positive event with people finding out what life they could have overseas.

A very positive event with people finding out what life they could have overseas.

Land of the long white clouds anyone?

Land of the long white clouds anyone?

Construction workers and senior construction managers required for large builds in NZ.

Construction workers and senior construction managers required for large builds in NZ.

Western Australia has a huge requirement for health workers.

Western Australia has a huge requirement for health workers.

Immigration news round-up – September 2015

As September slides around, it’s been a bit quiet on the visa news front from Australia, Canada and New Zealand. This is true for New Zealand especially – perhaps because the national focus is on that upcoming Rugby World Cup?

This month find out the financial benefits of moving to Australia for skilled workers; about two more visa schemes for Canada; and an upcoming snapshot of life for new Kiwis.

Australia

Moving to Australia pays off?

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has, for the first time, released some data on the personal income of Australian migrants. If you’re wondering about the financial implications of a move to Australia, have a look at some key figures:

  • The total income of migrant taxpayers in the 2009-10 financial year was $37.7 billion
  • Employee income contributed 92% to total income, of which $25.5 billion was reported by migrants from the skilled visa stream
  • Skilled visa holders’ average employee income was about $5,000 higher than the national average of $48,907 for all Australian taxpayers

So moving to Australia under the skilled visa stream means you could have an income higher than other Australian taxpayers.

Read all the data on the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ website, or start looking for that skilled job in Australia.

Canada

Quebec Immigration Investor Program reopens

If you’re keen on Canada, you’ll be pleased to hear that Quebec’s Immigration Investor Program has reopened. One of the world’s most popular immigrant investor programmes, this visa scheme allows qualified investors and their dependent family members the chance to gain Canadian permanent residency through investing CAD$800,000 risk-free, through an approved financial intermediary.

Applications opened on 31 August 2015 and will close 29 January 2016 – although it’s expected that the application quota of 1,750 will be reached before then.

Find out more about the requirements at Quebec’s official immigration website.

British Columbia needs skilled trade workers

Fort St John, in the north of the Canadian province of British Columbia, has recently announced the establishment of a pilot programme to bring in skilled international workers.

They are looking especially for skilled and experienced trade workers, such as electricians and welders.

No further details are available yet, but we’ll update you as soon as they become available.

New Zealand

Migrant Survey

Immigration New Zealand has begun the process of collecting data for its 2015 Migrant Survey. It’s an annual survey, sent out to a random sample of people who’ve been through New Zealand’s immigration process, that asks for feedback on topics including jobs, education background and levels of happiness.

Immigration New Zealand then takes on board the feedback to work out how new Kiwis settle into New Zealand and whether they can improve their services for future new migrants.

As the survey has just been sent out, we don’t have details of the results yet but it’s sure to be an interesting snapshot of life in New Zealand for new Kiwis. We’ll make sure we post the survey results when they’re released – if you haven’t already, sign up to our newsletter.  We’ll then email you this survey data when it’s available – easy!

Maid of the Mist VII, Niagara Falls

What jobs are on the New Zealand Skills Shortage List?

Before you get too carried away switching your rugby allegiance to the All Blacks or starting to brush up on your Kiwi slang, it’s a good idea to see whether your skills are needed in New Zealand.

waiheke_Fotor

Although having a job on one of New Zealand’s skill shortage lists isn’t a guarantee of a job or a visa, it can help make the job- and visa-getting experience a bit easier.

There are four skill shortage lists in New Zealand:

  1. Long Term Skill Shortage List
  2. Immediate Skill Shortage List
  3. Canterbury Skill Shortage List
  4. List of Skilled Occupations

Immigration New Zealand has a great tool – put in your occupation and see if it’s a skill in demand. Try the skill shortage list check.

The Long Term Skill Shortage List (LTSSL)

The LTSSL shows the occupations that are in ongoing shortage throughout New Zealand, and the rest of the world.

If you get a job in an occupation that’s on the LTSSL, plus meet any extra requirements, you may be granted a work visa under the Work to Residence category.

That means you may be able to apply for residency in two years, as long as you meet the standard requirements and that your job has a base salary of at least NZ$55,000 per year.

See if your occupation is on the LTSSL.

Immediate Skill Shortage List (ISSL)

The ISSL has occupations where skilled workers are needed immediately in New Zealand and where there are no available New Zealand citizens or residents to take the jobs. This means the applications can be processed quicker.

If you’re offered a job on the ISSL, and meet the requirements, you may be granted an Essential Skills work visa. You can work in New Zealand temporarily but may not be able to apply for residency.

See if your occupation is on the ISSL.

Canterbury Skill Shortage List (CSSL)

Following the Christchurch 2010 and 2011 earthquakes, the CSSL lists the occupations in critical shortage in the Canterbury region. It has occupations on the Immediate and Long Term Skill Shortage Lists that are directly relevant to the Canterbury and Christchurch rebuild.

If your skills are on the CSSL and you have a job offer in Canterbury you may be granted an Essentials Skills work visa which allows you to work temporarily in New Zealand. However if your occupation is also on the LTSSL, then you may be able to apply for residency.

See if your occupation is on the CSSL.

List of Skilled Occupations

If your occupation is on this list, you’re able to apply for a resident visa under the Skilled Migrant  category. This points-based visa considers factors like your age, work experience, qualifications and job offer.

To apply for a Skilled Migrant visa, you must be under 55 years old, meet the skill level for your occupation and meet English language, health and character requirements.

See if your occupation is on the List of Skilled Occupations.

Where to Next?

If you’ve checked the lists and found your occupation, that’s a great first step. You can now:


Make sure you plan your move to New Zealand right the first time, and get the right visa to avoid unnecessary complications later on.  Best of luck!

Immigration news round-up – August 2015

This month has seen the release of interesting findings from Canada’s new Express Entry visa system, and the launch of three new exciting provincial visa streams in Canada.

There’s also news of incentives for would-be Kiwis who are willing to live and work in areas outside of Auckland. Find out how to get your skills assessed in Australia; know your rights on an Australian Working Holiday visa; and beware a phishing scam in New Zealand.

Australia

Assessing Authorities

With some visa applications, you’ll be required to prove that your international skills are transferable and relevant to Australia. To do this, you will need a skills assessment undertaken by an authorised organisation. You’ll need to contact them direct and they can provide you with all the relevant forms and information. You may need to pay to have your skills assessed.

View the assessing authorities in Australia.

Being treated fairly on a Working Holiday Visa

Australia offers Working Holiday visa schemes to many countries, including the UK, Europe and China, giving young people (aged 18-30) the opportunity to travel, work and enjoy Australia.

However two Dutch backpackers are taking their Working Holiday employer to court and suing them for unpaid wages. They undertook the unusual job of golf-ball diving (that’s recovering thousands of lost golf balls from golf course lakes and water features) and are claiming that they weren’t paid fairly for their work.

It’s a good reminder to make sure you fully understand the rules and regulations around Australia’s Working Holiday visa and your rights.

Read more about the backpackers’ experience.

Canada

Express Entry report released

Following the launch of Canada’s Express Entry system in January 2015, Citizenship & Immigration Canada has released a report of key findings from its first six months.

These findings include:

  • The pool is growing by about 1,500 persons/profiles per week.
  • The number of profiles completed was 112,701, with 48,723 (that’s roughly 43%) of these not eligible.
  • The most dominant countries of citizenship of invited candidates are India and the Philippines, which each supplied around one-fifth of those invited to apply.

Through the first 11 draws:

  • 4% of those invited to apply did not have a qualifying job offer or enhanced provincial nomination certificate.
  • 65% had a qualifying job offer.
  • 4% had an enhanced provincial nomination certificate.

However, not including the first four draws (because at that stage only applicants with a score above 600 were invited to apply before this threshold was lowered:

  • 41% of those invited to apply did not have a qualifying job offer or an enhanced provincial nomination certificate.

The majority of candidates selected in the sixth (March 27), eighth (April 17) and eleventh (June 27) draws had neither a qualifying job offer nor a provincial nomination certificate.

See the official data from Citizenship & Immigration Canada.

All of this is great news for people looking to apply for a Canadian visa as the requirements are becoming slightly less restrictive.

British Columbia launches new entrepreneur program

British Columbia has recently launched a new visa program aimed specifically at experienced business people and entrepreneurs. Successful applicants will be awarded a work permit. Then, if their business is commercially viable and provides significant benefits to the local economy, they (and their families) will be able to apply for permanent residency through the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP).

Like other Canadian visa programs, this one will work by you entering a pool of candidates with the aim of getting as many points as possible, out of a maximum 200. Only 200 candidates are accepted into the pool each month. BC PNP will then invite the highest-scoring candidates to submit visa applications.

Requirements for this program include factors such as:

  • Business and/or work experience
  • Personal net worth and source of funds
  • Adaptability
  • Business proposal, including proposal investment and local job creation

Find out more about the BC PNP.

Ontario opens two new immigration streams

Ontario is the most sought-after province by would-be Canadians and it’s just opened two new immigration schemes that are aligned with the Express Entry system:

  1. The Human Capital Priorities stream; and
  2. The French-speaking Skilled Worker stream

Find out more about the streams and whether you’re eligible – Human Capital Priorities stream or French-speaking Skilled Worker stream.

New Zealand

Incentive to move to New Zealand’s provincial centres

Auckland is New Zealand’s largest city, and home to thousands of newly landed skills – and now New Zealand wants to encourage people to look beyond Auckland if they’re making the move.

Effective from November 2015, skilled migrants will have bonus points trebled if they apply for residence with a job offer not from Auckland – although you will have to stay in that region for 12 months, rather than three. If you’re starting a business in the provinces, you’ll have your Entrepreneur Work Visa points doubled.

This means it could be easier and quicker for you to move to New Zealand, as long as you’re willing to live and work outside Auckland.

Scam Immigration NZ website warning

A fake website has been set up that is trying to trick people in providing their passport details. The official Immigration NZ website is www.immigration.govt.nz and the fake one is http://www.immigration-govt.nz.

Beware of this site if you’re searching for the Immigration NZ website.

Read more about the scam. 

Planet-Earth

Immigration News Roundup – July 2015

We keep a lookout for recent immigration changes in Australia, Canada and New Zealand so that you don’t have to. This month discover Australia’s migration trends over the past year, and see whether you’re in demand in South Australia.  Find out about two new Canadian immigration schemes, and see how a licensed immigration adviser can help with your New Zealand online visa application.

Australia

Australia’s Migration Trends 2013–2014

The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection has recently released a new report called Australia’s Migration Trends 2013–2014. Some of the key statistics from the report are that in the 2013–2014 programme year:

  • 207,947 permanent migration visas were granted – a decrease of 4.2 per cent on the previous year.
  • This included 190,000 places under Australia’s migration programme.
  • Of the migration programme’s 190,000 visas:
    • 128,550 visas (or 67.7 per cent) were granted through the skill stream.
    • 61,112 visas (or 32.2 per cent) were granted through the family stream.
    • 338 visas (or 0.2 per cent) were granted under the special eligibility visa category.
  • The place where most people moved from was India, with 39,026 places (that’s a 20.5 per cent share).
  • This was followed by the People’s Republic of China (26,776 places) and the UK (23,220 places).
  • Demand for the Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) visas decreased significantly. Grants for these visas fell 22.0 per cent which may be due to the government’s February 2014 review of the 457 process.

Check out the full report for further details.

Revised South Australia State Occupation List

On 1 July 2015, Immigration South Australia published a revised State Occupation List. Visit Immigration South Australia to view the new list. This list gives you an idea of what skills and jobs are in demand in South Australia. New English requirements for South Australia There have been some changes to the English requirements for some occupations on the South Australia State Occupation List including:

  • ICT occupations – Proficient English is required in each band score (or an overall score of Proficient Plus, i.e. IELTS 7.5 overall).
  • Engineering occupations – Competent Plus English (or an overall score of Proficient, i.e. IELTS 7 overall).

The State Occupation List contains the changes to the English requirements for other occupations.

Canada

Express Entry points requirement decreasing

The new Express Entry system for skilled migration to Canada involves creating a pool of potential applicants, who are invited to apply for a visa through a regular draw. Applicants are awarded points based on certain criteria, like their skills, experience, language capabilities, work history, etc. Two recent draws in June 2015 have seen the level of applicants’ points decreasing yet the number of invitations to apply for a visa increasing. This means meeting the requirements for skilled entry to Canada may be getting a little easier.

New immigration schemes for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia

Two eastern Canadian provinces, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, have recently announced new immigration schemes that are looking for skilled newcomers from overseas. The streams are aligned with the federal Express Entry systems. Although you don’t need a job offer from a Canadian employer to make an application, you must be eligible for either the:

Follow the links to find out more about the New Brunswick Express Entry Labour Market Stream or Nova Scotia Experience: Express Entry.

New Zealand

‘Apply on behalf’ now live

Immigration New Zealand has launched a new service called ‘Apply on Behalf’. This means that licensed immigration advisers and other people exempt from licensing, like lawyers, can now apply for visas online on your behalf. This means they can:

  • Start a new online application for a Student, Work or Visitor visa
  • Complete the application in much the same way as you can
  • View submitted applications and upload supporting documents

This means you could benefit from expert support when it comes to completing your visa application online – and it’s one less thing for you to do. Visa-and-Passport

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