New Zealand has partially opened its borders to international students. Following this, 5,000 students will enter the country in the coming weeks. New Zealand’s borders would witness its full opening from 31 July 2022, which was earlier expected to commence in October.
As per the revised guidelines on post-study work rights, graduate students are eligible to secure only one post-study work permit through which they can work for three years. On the other hand, non-degree students would qualify for the same provided that their qualification aligns with an occupation on the new “Green List.” which shows the skills in demand in the country’s labor market.
There is also a revision regarding the funds needed to cover the living expenses. Higher education and English-language students are expected to demonstrate an annual amount of $20,000, whereas the primary and secondary students must show $17,000 to fund their living expenses which were $15,000 per year as per old rules. Also, the students receiving the work permit must display funds worth $ 5,000.
Prime Minister Jacinda Arden said that the revised immigration plan would enhance the available labor pool and speed up tourism recovery. It is also believed that the country’s revised approach will attract more international students and save the low-skilled workers from exploitation.
This reform in the immigration process reflects the government’s initiative to link immigration to New Zealand’s economic priorities and stem the flow of low-skilled migrants.
In addition to this, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi further addressed their vision to reinforce the labor force within the country through trades training involving apprenticeships, under which around 1,90,000 New Zealanders benefitted.
The bottom line of the scheme is that students from outside can opt to study in New Zealand. Still, only those whose qualifications align with the country’s job market can have a better experience in employment opportunities or immigration purposes.