November 8, 2016
MEDIA RELEASE - NZAMI
Labour’s job training scheme doomed to fail
The Labour Party’s latest proposal to place a tax on employers to make sure businesses are doing more job training
rather than hiring migrants is doomed to fail, comments June Ranson, chair of the New Zealand Association for Migration and Investment (NZAMI)
“This proposal implies that businesses are not pulling their weight, which is not the case. New Zealand has one of the
lowest employment rates in the world at just below five percent. This proposal has not been thought through,” she says.
Ms Ranson cites the example of an ethnic restaurant with Chinese or Indian chefs.
“The restaurant-owner would be expected to employ a young New Zealander at the same time as a Chinese or Indian chef so
that they can have the time to train the New Zealander. To have an existing staff member undertake the training would
place a huge burden on the employer already experiencing a skill shortage.
“This would involve two lots of wages being paid for one job. It would take longer than six months to train such a chef.
The same issues would apply to the construction and IT industries.
“What happens when the New Zealander is fully trained? Surely, the owner would need to sack the migrant who has provided
the training. You would not get a migrant to come to NZ to be a trainer. Plus, this practice would undermine the role of
training institutions,” she points out.
Instead, Ms Ranson suggests, the current practice of unemployment benefit should be accompanied by some work
“Labour recently stated that work would be available in conservation and tourism. Why is this employment not being
offered now when the unemployed are all receiving a benefit?”
NZAMI is New Zealand's leading professional association for immigration specialists. The organisation is made up of
lawyers and licensed immigration advisers who must uphold professional standards and comply with the Association’s
strict Code of Ethics. For more information, please see: www.nzami.co.nz