New Zealand’s new immigration policies favour Indians

Wellington, Aug 4 (IANS) The Indian diaspora in New Zealand welcomed the country’s fresh migration plans aimed at rejuvenating the provinces that have a “massive skills mismatch”, a report said.

“Government measures to attract migrants, Indians in particular, to the regions are a good idea. It makes sense to give migrants the opportunity to use their skills to develop regional areas rather than adding to dense populations in big cities,” New Zealand Herald quoted New Zealand Indian Central Association president Harshadbhai Patel as saying on Monday.

“The majority of those migrating to the country from India go to the big cities for the social life and job prospects. However, some students do study in regional areas such as Otago and Rotorua and can be given opportunity — if they have the skills those regions require,” Patel said.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key’s government has announced immigration measures that are aimed at improving the country’s economic growth by allowing migrants to work under cordial atmosphere so that they can provide skills, labour and capital, along with valuable cultural and business links.

However, some people are less than optimistic about the new policies.

“Economic opportunities first have to be created, and then people will come. Just having immigration policy on its own is not going to do very much,” economist Shamubeel Eaqub was quoted as saying.

Eaqub said the Government’s measures to get migrants to the regions would not solve the provinces’ underlying problem — the poverty trap.


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