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Tuesday, November 3

Research confirms immigration's contribution to New Zealand

Immigration Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman has announced findings of a research study highlighting the major contribution that immigration makes to New Zealand's economy. He was delivering the opening address at the Pathways, Circuits and Crossroads Conference, held at Te Papa in Wellington.

"What the Department of Labour's International Migration Settlement and Employment Dynamics (IMSED) research shows us is that, without immigration the outlook is bleak," says Dr Coleman.

"Without current levels of inward migration, both our population base and economy would shrink dramatically. By 2021, our population would drop by 9.6 per cent and our GDP would drop by 11.3 percent. There would be a 10.9 percent drop in the available labour force and the export sector would be savaged with volumes dropping by 12.9 percent.

"What this research tells us is that immigration contributes significantly to every New Zealander's per capita income," says Dr Coleman.

"It's clear that government policy has to continue the focus on economic gains from immigration.

"Significant achievements in the Government's first year have included new Business Migration policies to reduce red tape and make it easier for a wider range of business migrants to invest in New Zealand, as well as improvements to the Recognised Seasonal Employer Policy.

"The passage of the Immigration Bill gives Government the framework for immigration policies that enhance economic growth. Intense focus is also going on improving the service delivery of Immigration New Zealand, through the Immigration Change Programme."

The Pathways, Circuits and Crossroads conference is running until Wednesday 4 November and is being held at Te Papa in Wellington.

To see The Economic Impacts of Immigration go to: http://www.dol.govt.nz/publications/research/cge/