Election 2014 - Party Policies - Immigration

Election 2014 - Party Policies - Immigration

Immigration

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  • ACT is and always has been the pro-immigration party.  However, ACT also believes that government policy should seek to ensure that immigration remains a good deal for the domestic population.
  • ACT supports the points system for new immigrants, ensuring that immigrants have readier access to work and do not have easy access to welfare, and lowering the tax burden so that the best immigrants may be attracted. 
  • ACT is also committed to monitoring the emerging literature that suggests immigration may make the domestic population poorer through a process of capital widening. (more here)

  • Increase our refugee quota from 750 to 1,000.
  • Give priority in the skilled migrant category to skills needed for a sustainable society and economy.
  • Require strict scrutiny of applications in the investor category for overall benefit to Aotearoa/NZ.
  • Require employers to give temporary migrant workers at least the same pay and working conditions as local workers.
  • Ensure that the setting of immigration levels would be reviewed regularly, based on: net population change; the need to have spare population capacity for returning NZ citizens and climate change refugees; the capacity of systems in place to cope fairly and effectively; the ability to encourage settlement outside areas under infrastructure and population capacity stress; the ability of our environment to cope with population increases New Zealand's humanitarian obligations with regard to refugees. (more here)

  • Ensure that the immigration system promotes a high-skilled high-wage economy rather than exploiting cheap labour that undercuts wages and undervalues training.
  • Reward skilled immigrants who live in the regions, where their skills can unlock growth and job opportunities for the community.
  • Review the family reunification categories and Pacific quota to ensure they are working effectively and that Pacific families are not excluded from family reunification possibilities.
  • Use the points system and other tools to manage the number of immigrants entering the country on work visas to even out the peaks and troughs in the immigration cycle.
  • Increase the number of refugees New Zealand accepts. (more here)

  • We would allow our Pacific neighbours to enter New Zealand on the same basis as Australians. This would end a long history of discrimination against people from the Pacific. Already people from the Cook Islands and Niue are able to do so but Tongans and Samoans face heavy restrictions. (more here)

  • All new citizens to complete a course in the history of Te Tiriti o Waitangi as part of receiving citizenship. (more here)

  • Set up job fairs for New Zealand employers in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane to recruit skilled Kiwis to contribute to New Zealand’s economic growth.
  • Continue to streamline the immigration system by rolling out the Immigration Online service which will see all visa applications moved online.
  • Continue to encourage high value tourism, international students, and business visitors to New Zealand through sensible immigration policies.
  • Continue to improve outcomes for refugees by supporting refugees through settlement into jobs and rebuilding the Mangere Refugee Resettlement Centre, where all quota refugees spend their first six weeks in New Zealand.
  • Continue to reduce the number of overstayers and combat people smuggling. (more here)

  • Ensure that there is effective labour market testing to ensure New Zealanders have first call on New Zealand jobs.
  • Ensure family reunion members are strictly controlled and capped and there is fairness across all nationalities.
  • Introduce a cap on the number of older immigrants because of the impact on health and other services.
  • Make sure effective measures are put in place to stop the exploitation of migrant workers with respect to wages, safety and work conditions. In Christchurch, and elsewhere, there is evidence of exploitation of migrant workers.
  • Develop strategies to encourage the regional dispersion of immigration to places other than Auckland. Auckland’s infrastructure is overloaded. (more here)

  • Develop a 10-year population strategy to identify the impact of demographic changes on our society, the economy, and other areas of government policy, and to develop policies to minimise the costs and capitalise on benefits that these changes may bring.
  • Prioritise the residency applications of those who have skills we need and a job offer that is relevant to those skills, and regularly update the priority occupations list.
  • Devise comprehensive and integrated immigrant settlement programmes, in consultation with the Federation of Multicultural Councils, to ensure that all new immigrants receive full information and ongoing support on all aspects of New Zealand society, including language, customs, job placement programmes, health and social services.
  • Focus efforts on ensuring that those who arrive in New Zealand under the family or humanitarian quotas are supported into viable training and employment opportunities, to enable them to obtain financial independence faster and to counter negative stereotypes about some migrant groups.
  • Establish a one-stop Business Development Agency to help migrants in setting up their own businesses. (more here)

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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Will be interesting to see the anti Government vote.  
Nationals policy according to their Spindoctors is: do nothing to frighten the horses - so no policy announcements = low risk,