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Autumn 2021 Newsletter

South Island Field Days

At Heartland Immigration we like to say that we are “on visa” while our farmers are “on farm”, however before Easter, at the Kirwee South Island Field Days we managed both. Meeting new people, greeting established clients while surrounded by folk passionate about agriculture, grass under our feet and canvas overhead. Wonderful exhibitions, fabulous equipment and innovation aplenty. I particularly liked the small helicopter for precision spraying.

Employers, with existing or who plan to employ employer assisted work visas holders, were eager to get to know about the new requirement for all employers to hold INZ Accreditation. By early May we hope to be able to share the implementation timeframe and are eagerly awaiting this from Immigration New Zealand (INZ).

At Kirwee we also met folk in the dairy industry pleased that assistant dairy farm manager and dairy herd manager roles join dairy farm manager as “skilled” occupations for residence assessment purposes. If you or your staff member would like to arrange a Skilled Migrant Category (SMC) residence pathway, now is the time.


If we didn’t meet you out and about and you would like to receive updates on employer assisted work visas or assistance with SMC please phone 021 793 205 or email [email protected].


Unsure about automatic visa renewals
INZ has a new tool for migrants to check if they met the criteria for an automatic visa without the need to formally apply. It isn’t always clear about who is eligible but now you can check it here.


Immigration (COVID-19 Response) Amendment Bill
A new immigration bill is currently before parliament aimed at extending temporary powers to administer visas until 15 May 2023. This is an extension of Covid-19 emergency immigration legislation which was first introduced May 2020.


Departures exceed arrivals
Migrant departures exceeded migrant arrivals, year ending February 2021, which hasn’t occurred since the late 1970’s. This is understandable with such restricted borders with folk relocating back to their original home country during this current emergency while others are unable to enter NZ. This is disruptive not only for split families but also as it adversely affects our economy.


Much is publicised from various industries highlighting the strain many employers are experiencing because they are unable to recruit onshore skilled personnel and yet they are unable to recruit offshore. Yes, upskilling and redeploying are good tools and have their place in the toolbox however that doesn’t resolve the immediate need. Let us not forget we are a country of migrants with a small population.


The sooner more places are available in managed quarantine (MQ) for skilled folk the better.


Vaccination passports
A vaccination pass or passport is documentation proving that you have been vaccinated against Covid-19. It may be in the form of a hardcopy but more likely an electronic version will be used. I remember carrying a yellow cardboard booklet detailing my vaccination status when I first travelled. Air New Zealand is trailing digital “vaccine passports” on trans-tasman routes. This travel pass application from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has been designed to confirm the traveller’s pre-travel test results and vaccination. Moving forward the need to prove our health status will go hand in hand with our visa status when travelling internationally. Good luck Air New Zealand.

In the UK they intend to use a National Health Service phone app to verify the Covid-19 status of individuals travelling internationally.


Time will tell which system is to be used but you can be sure being vaccinated, having evidence of this and providing recent Covid-19 testing results will be the norm.

Keep safe and do follow the Covid-19 rules. To flourish, the world needs international borders to be fluid.

Disclaimer: Mary Noonan is Heartland Immigration Ltd Managing Director her views expressed in this article are not intended to replace the professional service provided to individual migrants by a Licensed or Registered Immigration Adviser or Migration Agent.