The number of Expressions of Interest (EOI) sitting in the Skilled Migrant pool has grown to more than 9,000 (estimated at 20,000+ people). The government said it would review the suspension of EOIs in April but no news at the time of going to press.
There are just over 12,000 Skilled Migrant Residence applications in the queue. These are people who applied before the suspension of EOI selections last March, or people who have qualified to apply under the Work to Residence category.
Residence applications in the non-priority queue (paid less than $106,080 per annum or not working in a job that requires occupational registration) are landing on immigration officers’ desks for processing if lodged in August 2019. Anyone who applied after August 2019 is still waiting and progress is slow. Priority applications are being assessed within a few weeks after lodgement.
Malcolm Pacific Immigration has written to the Minister of Immigration again encouraging him to restart EOI selections. Skilled workers are hurt by the constant delays and New Zealand runs the real risk of losing talent to other countries hunting for skilled workers.