Bill English's responses to questions on how government might tweak its immigration policy point towards rowing back on lower-skilled Essential Skill migrant visa roadblocks

Bill English's responses to questions on how government might tweak its immigration policy point towards rowing back on lower-skilled Essential Skill migrant visa roadblocks

By Alex Tarrant

Bill English’s responses to questions about potential changes to new immigration policy floated just months ago indicate he and Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse are looking to row back particularly on a previous planned crack-down on lower-skilled migrants.

English was holding his cards close to his chest at Monday’s post-Cabinet press conference, encouraging journalists to “wait and see” how April’s proposals might be tweaked in the next few weeks after feedback from employers included what he said were some straightforward concerns.

Tweaks would ensure “real services” continue to be provided as the demand for skills in the construction, hospitality, horticulture, trucking and aged care industries heats up further, English said.

“These are real services that have to be provided…next week, the week after, next year. So, we do have to take into account those issues,” he said. “It’s a matter of making sure that we’ve got the people to do the work that has to be done. Like, you have to service the tourists, you have to build the houses, you have to look after the old people – there’s no choice about that.”

In April, Woodhouse announced the government was looking to impose a number of changes to how ‘skilled’ migrants would be able to enter and remain in the country. The headline policy was a $48,000 income threshold for a skilled migrant to receive employment points for their application if they were to enter a job in the top three skills levels here. A secondary policy meant anyone who was going to earn more than $73,000 would just be considered skilled regardless of what they did.

But there were also other changes relating to lower-skilled temporary workers. Employers would only be able to tap lower-skilled migrants for three years, with these people facing an annual review then being whacked with a two-year stand down period before they could reapply to come back into the country.

It was this policy which drew a large amount of condemnation from the industries above, particularly agriculture and horticulture. Indeed, Dairy NZ was quick on Monday to come out in support of National tweaking its immigration policy, even though we don’t know what the tweaks are yet.

Dairy NZ CEO Tim Mackle pointed out that while dairy farmers and farm managers were classed as level one on the skills ladder, farm assistants and herd managers were down at level five. This means they’d have to earn $73,000 a year to get in on a Skilled Migrant Visa.

For those who came in on the lower-skilled three-year visa, these workers were facing having to renew their visa every year, leave in three and not have their family enter the country with them, Mackle said. While Dairy NZ would like these workers to be classed higher up the skills chain to at least be in reaching distance of the $48,000 threshold, Mackle said the sector at least needed the ability to retain workers that had been trained up for specific roles Kiwis weren’t filling without them being turfed out after three years.

“Without being able to retain skilled migrant staff, dairy farms in several regions, especially Southland and Canterbury, will be severely impacted in terms of profitability. There’s the real likelihood that with fewer skilled, and consequently more unskilled staff on the ground farmers would also not be able to keep up their high standards of care for the environment they live and work in, or for such aspects as animal welfare and health and safety.”

And this seems to be the direction English and Woodhouse are heading in: “The outcome, it won’t be the one that you’re describing,” English said in answer to my questions at one point. I had been asking what was wrong with employers having to pay at least $48,000 to bring an ‘Essentially Skilled’ foreigner into the country. I got the feeling that side of things might not be the main focus of the tweaks.

Business getting the idea on training

Another theme also started to show through. Much of the criticism of New Zealand allowing lower-skilled migrants into the country is that, we must be able to train up the 90,000 youth not in education, employment or training (NEETs) to take on these jobs.

Had employers baulked at the costs of having to train locals rather than just being able to rely on bringing in cheap, foreign labour? No, English said. But businesses were starting to get the idea that they might want to take some responsibility for investing on creating a local workforce base.

“I must say, there’s been a good discussion over the last 12 or 18 months with a number of our industries, particularly horticulture, but hospitality coming to it as well, where they need to understand it’s not the government’s job to go and procure their workforce. It’s their job.”

“We’re having increasingly constructive discussions with these industries to make sure they don’t become reliant on government [immigration] policy to supply their workforce,” English said. Government was working with industries to make sure that they are adapting to the situation. “The point I’m making is, that they seem to me to be getting significantly more constructive about that.”

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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It shouldn't be too hard to change the skill level assigned to someone who is a 'herd manager'. Each cow brings in $1,300 in exports each year and probably plenty more for sales of milk and meat in NZ. So a herd of say 200 cows is very valuable and anyone (kiwi or Filipino) responsible for the herd should be paid accordingly. I'd put that above the $48,000 and maybe below the $73,000. Of course every farmer would prefer to pay a 3rd world wage but the nats should stand up and defend the working kiwi not just obey the farming lobby.

Someone said 'kiwis won't wipe bottoms' about lack of kiwis working in care homes. Well when Britain made it harder for Filipino's to work in UK care homes guess what happened: the owners found Brits willing to do the job (ref The British Dream by David Goodhart).

Apologies for mentioning Filipino's twice because they are great people from a beautiful country - happy to apply the same argument to any country of origin including my own.

Agreed there are plenty on the benefit who could do the job and it would help them get out of there rut and back into the productive habit.
Because NZ Business want to employ people who work for a lot less, this short term solution won't help NZ and is costing the tax payer now and in the long run i.e. the crazy housing crises DPBennette mentioned.

It's not that badly paid. Here are the results of this years Federated Farmers member survey of wages:

"Sheep and beef farm worker salaries have risen the most of any sector in the past year, with shepherds ahead by 4 per cent to an average of $46,000 and stock managers 6.8 per cent to $57,000.

Grain farm workers also improved, with farm managers up by 7.7 per cent to $67,000, and tractor drivers ahead by 1.7 per cent to $48,000.

Junior dairy workers such as farm assistants rose 0.7 per cent to $41,000, and assistant herd managers climbed 1.2 per cent to $46,000. Dairy herd managers ($52,000) were down 0.8 per cent, and farm managers and operations managers saw their salaries fall by 1.5 and 1.6 per cent respectively.

However, once the total package is taken into account, a dairy operations manager earned an average $74,000."

So you don't think we need to weaken the new rules they have proposed - at least for pay. If they reduce the limit to retain half a dozen (maybe really excellent) Filipino dairymen in Otago it will probably also allow a few hundred shelf-stackers into Auckland.

How has remuneration ever been tied to skill and capability? Whilst this might make sense in pockets of industries and job descriptions, it's absolutely not true across the board. [ Cheap insults/smears just not needed here. Ed ]

Perhaps you've misinterpreted my point or I'm not seeing what you're seeing? Nonetheless, those paid good money to form policy are assumed to be skilled, although one may argue history and current day policies tell us otherwise.? To the point in the part of my comment you've since removed...

perhaps this explains the governments mass immigration policy, and why the're unusually relaxed about the retirement age.

That is exactly what I have been harping on about

I suspect that by promoting mass immigration into the West they hope that there will be some sort of back-flow influence happening in the source countries over time.

The average IQ of the immigrant countries is about 70. What will happen is the immigrants with the highest IQ leave first leaving no one able to pull those countries out of decline making the situation worse so then everybody starts leaving and chaos ensues. Meanwhile the west has a problem that as the immigrants have no chance of integrating let alone holding down a job civil unrest becomes a huge problem and host countries' social welfare system is unable to cope. The Roman Empire basically failed because of mass immigration and their social welfare system was over extended (the games and free bread kept the masses subdued)

Well that doesn't make sense - you are saying that the average IQ in immigrant countries is around 2 standard deviations away from the world mean?

I talking about the refugees that are entering Europe, not the Chinese and the Asia region as they have a very high IQ

By the sounds of it, you have an IQ of around 70...

The global IQ is not 100, where did you get that idea from?

This is more about education and access to it than IQ. As far as I'm aware, there's been no research that suggests significant deviations of innate IQ across the world's races.

(That said, you're unlikely to see research on that because who on earth would fund the research?)

I know it sounds awful, and I should not have gone there, I regret it. I have to go to a meeting but will try to post some links to this later (though it might make matters worse) and you are probably correct it relates to education not IQ.

Interestingly enough, the neurologist Sam Harris was suggesting it would make an interesting area for research (himself being an Ashkenazi Jew, he's curious about the disproportionately high achievement among that population). It was he who noted that it's a difficult thing to research because it's unpalatable to many...harks back to the history of eugenics in the 19th and 20th centuries and the terrible direction it took by the mid 20th century.

Quite likely every race suffers from a superiority complex in some way - e.g. see gaming addict whose father in law gave a 40% deposit for his first house Gary Lin's Facebook posts about how Chinese are just better, the elite.

IQ won't determine success. Correct application of intelligence will. But you don't get taught that in our education system. And you see this play out throughout society....people that think they are highly intelligent over estimate their own abilities and therefore experience failure. Never take advice from someone who claims to be an 'expert'...(like the property bulls on this site...!)

And is in fact EQ a better indicator of success over IQ? (Daniel Goleman has a few good books on this topic).

This must be the reason why people don't listen to their GP / Specialist medical professional! It all makes sense now. Given that you shouldn't take the advise of expert medical professionals shouldn't we scrap free healthcare entirely and let those who want the advise we shouldn't take pay for said advise on their own?

This must be why all of the economists and bankers in the world have picked every financial crisis - while claiming to be experts in their fields....

Do you ever consider how little we know in every field? Be it economics or medicine (per your example above). I mean if there was a continuum where we know nothing at one extreme (start of time) to the other end where we know everything (infinite - end of time) - where do you think we sit? Are we half way there? The arrogant and ignorant claim that we're already there - they already know everything so there's no point listening or learning anything new - whereas the cautious realise they know very little at all and there's a hell of a lot more to learn. So it's perhaps a gauge of persons arrogance/ignorance as to whether or not they claim to be an 'expert'....Are you an expert? A real expert will claim that they are no expert at all because they know enough to know that they know very little at all....

Oh and Sadr001 if you're struck down with cancer sometime - just ask your 'expert' GP/Specialist medical professional to cure you quick smart - oh they'll tell you we don't know enough about cancer to do that.....but yes we are 'experts' in the cancer field..(its just a label that doesn't really reflect reality...)

No, they won't. They'll very likely offer you a range of treatments to attempt to cure the disease. Many types of cancer are extremely treatable, especially if caught early.

The link below below has a portion arguing that IQ is a better indicator of success not EQ.

I have long considered the possibility that the Jewish history of persecution from other religions ensured their high degree of intelligence. Those less able were far more likely to be killed.

I hold Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens (may he RIP), Dan Dennett and Richard Dawkins (The Four Horsemen) in great regard. I said I would come back with a link.

ta. The Sam Harris podcast is worth subscribing to. some great interviews there.

Yes, I agree also my other hero is the theoretical physicist, Laurence Krauss, simply brilliant.

Here is a link to an interview with an economist Garret Jones who wrote "The Hive Mind" they discuss IQ, nations, whether bringing in low skilled immigrants lowers the wages and all manner of things regularly discussed here on They refer quite often to our very own New Zealand Emeritus Professor of Political Studies James Flynn. I will refrain from trying to explain as I am sure it will come out wrong and I will get in trouble. I highly recommend watching it, if only to spark some sort of hopefully civilized and more informed debate which I believe is needed.

There is research and it does show differences. However the differences are slight - say far less than when we say men are taller than women - and they have a bigger problem explaining why IQ keeps going up a couple of points every decade - I do not deny that there are some bright youngsters but I can't detect any average difference other than computer gaming seems to assist with certain IQ testing questions.
It is quite astonishing how similar we all are whatever ethnicity - ref blood transfusions, heart transplants, Olympic medals.

It really bugs me when someone says anything as stupid as Africans having an IQ of 70. Not just stupid but easily exploited to justify evil.

Well hidden behind the prejudice is a serious point about OECD countries sucking in the small numbers of highly educated technicians from the 3rd world. For example 10% of the Syrian refugees are graduates but half of those 10% have moved into Europe especially Germany. Another examples are the many trained pilots from PNG working outside PNG.

We're also now seeing NZ pilots moving out of NZ straight after training because 1) training is costly, and 2) the path in NZ to actually making an okay income is too long.


Interesting link. 28 years of declining Japanese population and they remain wealthy despite virtually zero migration. Meanwhile during the same period NZ with world record legal migration has just kept sinking down the OECD list of successful countries.

The Japanese are a nation of savers, and having decades of deflation has helped those savers. They will eventually begin to see large declines in wealth once health costs start to rise along with a falling tax base (from less younger workers)

I can't really agree that's inevitable - they are pretty smart people and I'm sure they'll be able to harness technology to replace workers.

Not only that, but once they get over the demographic hump of people caused by very high post-war birth rates, they'll have a much more sustainable population.


There are lots of perspectives that relate to that.

1 Population decrease is not related to how the average people fare economically. My analysis of over 100 countries reveal that there is a mildly negative correlation between population growth and GDP/capita growth. Quite a few countries have falling populations and their people have very strong increasing wealth. I view the economies that rely largely on population growth as ponzie schemes that are just a lazy excuse for economic management and like all ponzie schemes, ultimately unsustainable

2 We need to urgently reduce the population of the world because the environment cannot sustainably support it's existing population and even more so if we wish to raise the standard of living in poorer economies (just consider how pollution has grown in China and India as their economies grow) A failed world environment will trump all other economic considerations.

3 The Black death plague reduced the population by between 25-40%, when the dust settled the wealth of average people rose, housing was plentiful and cheap, wages high. This fuelled a drive to increase productivity, lead to an industrial revolution all of which pushed high economic growth so every body was far better off than the previous serf master economy (arguably you could say that western economies have been heading back to a serf economy)

4 Focusing on the African/European population growth imbalance.
In about the mid 4th century ad there was a period of climate change (malaria in the North Sea, glaciation changes) more importantly it caused a prolonged drought in the normally very fertile area of the steppes of central Eurasia. This lead to a mass migration of people into into the Middle East and Europe. This was the invasion of the Goths, Hunns etc. This started out humbly as people were desperate and threw themselves on the mercy of host nations. As we all know it did not remain this way.
You could say that we are starting to see something similar occurring now with the mass migration of people out of North Africa into Southern Europe. How long will it be before these immigrants start raising armies and start invading, they are already warring amongst themselves, it is not a big step before they start looking outward. a rising African population is only going to push them in this direction.

And I thought my posts were too long. However your points are good and couldn't be abbreviated - very interesting and I reckon correct.
Except I hope point 4 is too gloomy - fortunately history doesn't have to repeat itself. If Africa was a collection of well governed countries it would have the potential to support a major population increase while actually improving the environment. I've no idea how to find a good government - something to do with trust between the people and the elite who govern??

I second that


I dont get this, according to press reports we have 90,000 Kiwis under 25 who are Not in Education Employment or Training .

I assume many of these would fall into the category who will, in due course, need social housing, while we have a housing shortage driven by immigration .

And now we want to increase the number of low-wage immigrants.

Why dont we just train the young people we have already ?

WTF is wrong with the so called brains trust that runs our country ?


They take their orders from "business".


heres one scenario playing out. Three year nursing degrees. Young kiwi's graduate and cant get into the local DHB. Nursing still on skills list, plane loans of foreigners (with often dubious quals) arriving to take these hospital jobs. These jobs are neccesary to get the skill levels to become reg nurse.

Can't get inot the local DHB first time? In the past, studnet goes to rest home, gets experiance and re-applies to DHB. jobs in rest homes as filled up with foreigners. Result..young kiwis with student can't do the job they want. This all about wage suppression.

Talking to nurse recently who has been away OE. Will you go back to the rest home? Maybe, but they want to give me the weekends so the visitors can see a kiwi face!

Belive it.

Likewise, look to see Kiwis who would have aspired to be schoolteachers being replaced by foreign imports too.

If Howick has schools that are 40% Chinese (ref Paul Spoonley) and that figure is increasing (probably would increase by internal migration even if our borders were shut tomorrow) then they need Chinese immigrant teachers.

These foreign nurses may have had many years experience working in the middle east but because they are new to NZ they will start on the lowest rate (still more than they get in Saudi, Dubai etc). They may not have the education standards or have any concept of NZ cultural norms, particularly Maori culture, but the DHBs love them. All the while our graduates miss out.

The 90,000 Kiwis under 25 who NOT in Education Employment or Training probably cannot pass the drug test, and are having a comfortable, thrill and work-free lifestyle supported by tax payers.


Yeah they are having a happy they have the highest suicide rate in the world.

15.6 suicides per 100,000.

Isn't that to do with NCEA? If I'm not mistaken our national suicide rates have been increasing while the percentage of the population educated via NCEA increases.

Surely it is also correlated with Nicholas Cage movies, too..

Computer games. Tablets. i-Phones. Can we sue Apple?

Rastus, Your rate of suicides may be correct (you didn't provide a link) but statistically farmer suicide rates are higher - some of those youth suicides will also be reflected in the farmer statistics.
The most common feature was existing mental illness, reported in 28 per cent....A broken relationship, drink and a gun - these three factors are a "fatal combination" and account for a significant proportion of farmer suicides, especially among young men....A gun was used by 40 per cent of the 185 farmers who took their lives between 2007-15, compared with 8 per cent in the general population.
StatsNZ Business demography tables show 120500 people employed in Agriculture, Fishing and Forestry as at Feb 2016. So not all of those are farmers.
There were 18 farmer suicides in 2015/16 - the latest figures available.

This is a popular misconception propagated by those who favour unbridled immigration that drives wages down. The truth is, tens of thousands are tested every year and only a few hundred fail:

It's a populist waste of money that appeals to those who mistakenly believe they've never take a cent from the state.

20,000 could be described as 'Tens of thousands of beneficiaries are tested each year' - but that could add up to less than 10% of all beneficiaries.

Here you go:

Last year, there were 31,791 referrals for drug testable positions nationwide and just 55 sanctions for failing a drug test, according to Ministry of Social Development (MSD) figures.


New Zealanders failed pre-employment drug tests just 466 times since they were introduced three years ago, Ministry of Social Development figures show.

The Herald sought the figures after Prime Minister Bill English cited the number of young Kiwis failing workplace drug tests as a reason not to further limit unskilled migrant numbers. "the party line"

English said the Government did not keep records of failed or refused drug tests, but businesses raised the issue with him "two or three times a week".

The ministry's figures, however, showed a relatively low level of jobseekers testing positive for drugs. There were 466 "drug-related work obligation failures" between July 2013 and June 2016 "which may have included a drug test refusal, failure of an evidential drug test or screening drug test".

The ministry was unable to immediately say how many people were tested in total over this period. But previous responses under the Official Information Act said there were between 29,000 and 32,000 tests a year. That would mean around 0.5 per cent of jobseekers had failed drug tests.

It's a red herring, though as above, National certainly repeat it as a mantra for why more low cost and easily exploitable migrant workers are needed.

In contrast, measurement for drugs in other industries seems quite low, despite the fact we just had an investment banker as PM for eight years.

Does that matter? You don't have to test every beneficiary to get an idea of the scale of the problem. Do you have any reason to think the 20,000 sample was not representative? Because if not, that's a huge number and plenty to make a statistical conclusion.

We have an idiot Prime Minister who made the excuse that our young people were unemployable due to drug abuse. His claim was refuted by WINZ who then stated that the failure rate of drug tests was 1 in 200.
A PM who is willing to sabotage the youth of his nation so that bosses can bring in cheap third world labor is worse than an idiot and a fool.


Bill English's jelly-back back-flip U-Turn under pressure from the big-money blueblood interests is not be unexpected - the grapevine - a couple of phone calls - you know Wild Bill hails from Dipton in Southland and will be mates of the Southland Patterson blueblood group

February 2016
Talking to a 30yo UK migrant employee of an agricultural-contractor last week. He had been working on a large Southland dairying conglomerate, 16 hour days, 11 days on, 2 days off. He didn't have a lot of energy left in the tank for himself. He once tried to get out during his days off, go see some of the countryside, wanted to see the Catlins. got half-way, had to pull over for a nap. Dog-tired. Gave up and went back "home" to bed.

The the dairying outfit he worked for - the name Patterson was mentioned

Didn't sound good. Now he's driving tractors/diggers in Otago. 8 Hour days. 10 am start.

Sounds like a high turnover of staff and exploitation. Any business that relies on the exploitation of it's employees is hardly on a sound foundation, unless it has a never-ending guaranteed supply of exploitable labour

So we have a shortage of houses, and so need to bring in lots of tradespeople to build them, and then we need more houses for them, adding to the shortage of houses, and so need to bring in lots of tradespeople to build them, and then we need more houses for them, adding to the shortage of houses, and so need to bring in lots of tradespeople to build them, and then we need more houses for them, adding to the shortage of houses...

Insanity in my opinion.


Not only that but they can bring their families. So for one tradesperson, you probably get 2 extra cars on the road, 1 house needed, 2 school or preschool places, and 4 GP registrations.

Less than 5% of the visas with working rights (residence and work visas) have been issued to tradesmen, based my own analysis of the INZ data. The open door policy which is meant to bridge housing shortages is clearly widening it instead. But crony capitalism takes precedence over all other public agenda.

I'm pretty sure a relatively low percentage of people being brought in are qualified trades people.

Bill English mentions hospitality like it is an essential industry. What would happen if they couldn't get staff? Certainly no national crisis.

This government is now captive of the bluebloods

This is evidence of what I have been saying for some time
Once they start they cant stop
It cascades right through the industry
The operators are now so big they wont let government change direction

30 April 2017 (an example of the cascade effect)
The never-ending need for exploited work-visa victims

Is there any incentive for high skilled immigration? Who on earth would a want to stunt their career and pay big bucks to live in a cold house? Lower pay. Fewer job opportunities. Expensive housing. Expensive goods. Incompetence everywhere.

The only high skilled people I see here either have some family connection tying them to NZ or couldn't quite make the cut for Canada/US/Australia.

exactly.. NZ just has no opportunity/market to attract and keep the high skilled. You wish an IT professional with PhD qualification who can easily make 200k+ USD in the US to come over here for a 50/h IT support job and make their future generations narrow-minded islander with awkward accent? no chance...

Have a look at the new Westpac internet banking site if you can, which I use several times a day. Appalling mess. Skilled IT professionals ? Not sure we are getting high skill.

The government is confident that the so-called "skilled migrants" that our country needs so desperately aren't worthy enough to earn upwards of 48k even after three years on essential skills visas.
I think we should word our job advertisements as "anyone with a heartbeat and functioning limbs willing to work on wages well-below market rate is welcome to apply".

This is why the bulk of the volume is from the third world, and is not of highly experienced folk.

My profession is on the skills shortage list and requires two degrees + significant training, and we're stuffed with Brits who came here rather than Australia/US (where the pay is significantly higher). The lifestyle is the dominant factor, we don't seem to be a particularly materialistic bunch but just about all of us are running/biking/swimming/skiing around this beautiful country and loving it. Housing quality is poor but at least here in Chch the cost is coming down quite nicely.

As an immigrant from POM I agree with everything you say except for the housing. Yes in NZ there is plenty of over-priced under-maintained cold homes but there are also wonderful cheap houses too. Depends on location. I'd rather have my single level weatherboard and roofing iron house on its own full section than any of the places I lived and/or owned in the UK.

Shortage of workers ??? If you need a rest home worker, dairy worker, truck driver try offering $5.00 more per hour. You will be astonished at the queue of applicants.
This is a country which should not have to worry about the level of the Minimum wage, because wages should be much higher anyway making the minimum wage irrelevant.

I've seen job advertisements for tax accountants requiring 1-2 years experience offering minimum wage.
This is National's dream of nation building on the backs of cheap labour brought in through unbridled immigration.

My Melanesian wife works for an accounting firm and when they advertise for a receptionist they get 70 applications from Asian graduates. BTW their employees are like a mini United Nations; in sequence the last seven: Bulgaria, Pacific, Kiwi, Philippines, China, India, UK, China.

I absolutely sympathise with the employers of your wife's firm. There is an acute shortage of people in New Zealand who are as skilled in fluent English as Bulgarians and Chinese.
Good job, Nats!

One of the Chinese has useful contacts with potential Chinese clients. I should mention that the two Chinese and the Indian have been resident for at least a decade and have good English otherwise they wouldn't have been employed. The owners of the company are Kiwi and just looking for good employees of whatever nationality. I'm all in favour of immigrants when they can settle down and become Kiwis - just like raindrops are useful but we just don't need a flood. I tend to post because of worries about 'multi-cultural' which is a concept that sounds fine until you realise it has shades of colonies and ghettos - good for nobody. Can lead to disaster when a recession hits. BTW boasting but my Melanesian wife was correcting her Kiwi accountant boss's written English within a week of arrival and I suspect is still doing so on occasion 14 years later. Still puts me right too. She doesn't read this blog.


When Rich Employer are concerned our elected national is ready to look into the problem BUT when FHB and Average kiwi are struggling to buy house, they never once thought of controlling Speculators and overseas buyers.

This is national government elected by us.

Time for change.

High profile industries like Dairy Farming and Viticulture SHOULD BE ASHAMED, their profitable business
models rely on cheap foreign Labour, this effectively drives down wages and only benefits those with a vested interest in maximising their profits, the expense is a fair living wage to a worthy NZ Citizen. And totally agree with Doris, a sensible fix would be to stop the inflow and let's play catch up!

interesting article about how the government counts the number of as BE has stated kiwis that are lazy or on drugs
For the whole of New Zealand, over that period, the number of people unemployed has increased 49%.

Our population growth is not matched by export growth. You don't have to be a politician or economist to understand that that means we are poorer per person.
You add to that that we now need to spend a fortune on infrastructure for this new population of people and you quickly realize that we as a nation are again poorer per person.
The population growth has put pressure on housing stock pushing up prices making the majority of NZers who don't own multiple or any houses poorer per person.
The people who owned multiple houses and land have done well from the suffering of the rest of the population.
Welcome to the new NZ, a land of extreme wealth and poverty.

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