BusinessNZ has welcomed last night’s announcement by the Government of an increased focus on attracting overseas investment but notes that New Zealand will not be attractive without a workforce to meet the needs of business.
“Skill shortages are already hitting New Zealand businesses and it is disappointing the Government is continuing to perpetuate a myth that migration suppresses wages,” BusinessNZ chief executive Kirk Hope said.
“The so-called “low value” people that the Government is talking about have helped keep our export industries going and have cared for some of our most vulnerable people over the last year.
“For too long our migration policy has been a political football. There needs to be a stronger policy focus on the economic social and cultural benefits that migrants bring to our economy and society, and a move away from the ideology that migrants drive wages down.
“A far stronger focus on thoughtful and nuanced policymaking is required in this area to ensure that NZ businesses can continue to meet the strong demand for our products and services, growing our economy and a better standard of living for everyone in NZ.”