INZ’s Game of Smoke and Mirrors with ESWV Extension

Minister of Immigration Hon Kris Faafoi

Having attended all of INZ’s webinars around the new visas and accredited employer schemes, I was continually left with the impression that this was another snap decision by Immigration New Zealand and they are making it up as they go along.

Every time anybody asks a question of substance around the policy and process of the new visas the answer is always the same “We are currently taking advice on that”, in fact I’d say this has become their mantra.

Surely if you are going to implement a policy of this nature you would make sure you have all your planning and procedures in place and you would have taken all the advice required BEFORE announcing the policy? Obviously not for the team at Immigration New Zealand.

Considering that 31 July 2021 was the cutoff date for the current policy, I could not believe that there was still so little information available and as the days ticked by I was just waiting for the pin to drop. And now it has, INZ can dress this up however they like but they have once again forged ahead with a poorly devised policy that even they have realised needs a far more planning before it can be implemented. I am just grateful that somebody had the common sense to hold off on the new visa policy.

So while the Hon Kris Faafoi’s announcement is good news for a large portion of the migrant community, it is nothing more than smoke and mirrors to detract from the fact that they have still not finalised the new visa and accreditation process.

Furthermore, even the extension of the Essential Skills Work Visas was poorly planned. As announced if you are currently on an ESWV and are applying for a new visa for the same role at the same company you will not need to provide a new police certificate or medical even if they have expired. I applauded this and felt it was a great concession, that was until I learned that this does not extend to partners and children. Partners and children will still require valid police certificates and medicals when applying for further visas.

And guess what, INZ are currently “taking advice on the matter”

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