In the previous year-long period there were 13.6 million border crossings (6.8 million arrivals and 6.8 million departures) but this nosedived to just 319,700 border crossings (127,600 arrivals and 192,100 departures) in the year to March.
Now the New Zealand Government is tightening the options for those hoping to migrate and work in the country, and has also announced new measures to attract wealthy investors.
Tourism minister Stuart Nash said: “When our borders fully open again, we can’t afford to simply turn on the tap to the previous immigration settings.
“The pressure we have seen on housing and infrastructure in recent years means we need to get ahead of population growth.”
Mr Nash said that since the early 1990s, surging levels of migration have contributed to nearly a third (30 percent) of New Zealand’s total population growth.
He added the country’s reliance on temporary workers “means businesses have been able to rely on lower-skilled labour and suppress wages rather than investing capital in productivity-enhancing plant and machinery, or employing and upskilling New Zealanders into work”.
The tourism minister said these changes would enable more than 00 wealthy international investors to come to New Zealand over the next year.
Last Thursday in a pre-budget speech to business leaders, New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has given an indication that wide-ranging changes to the country’s immigration rules were afoot.
On Monday, the Prime Minister said the country’s Government were using the coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity to reconsider a number of areas, including immigration.
But she remained tight-lipped on the number of people that would be affected by the changes, insisting it was not about “crude numbers”.
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: World Feed