Partnering with industry

We partner with industry groups, education providers, employers and businesses to make it easier for migrants to come to New Zealand.

We work with industries such as tourism, construction and education to support their growth.

Tourism and international education are big export earners for New Zealand – they’re worth more than NZ $12 billion a year. The government aims to double this by 2025. Working with industry partners to facilitate migration will help reach that goal.

Partnering with education providers

In 2013, we trialled a partnership initiative with selected education providers to speed up visa processing.

The partner education providers selected individual foreign students for ‘streamlined’ processing and took responsibility to ensure each student:

  • had enough money to live on
  • was serious about studying
  • chose an appropriate course
  • met all course entry requirements, and
  • would comply with the conditions of their visa.

The partnership ran as a trial in 2014 with 25 education providers. We extended the trial in 2015. Participants needed to be:

  • a Students Online partner
  • rated category 1 following an evaluation by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority
  • able to maintain a minimum 90% approval rate of student visas
  • able to ensure that most of their students wouldn’t breach their visa conditions
  • known to comply with immigration laws
  • known to comply with the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students.

Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students

Partnering with licensed immigration professionals

INZ surveyed immigration professionals to find out what they wanted us to do better.

Although there was some support for an industry partnership, INZ will not be pursuing a more formal partnership at this time. In the meantime, we’ll continue to focus on improvements in the following areas:

  • electronic lodgement
  • guaranteed processing times
  • clearly explaining application lodgement criteria.

Partnering with specific industries to streamline visa processing

Entertainment industry

INZ has an accredition option for entertainment industry employers. Accreditation allows entertainment industry companies to employ migrant workers without the need to seek case-by-case agreement with the relevant union, guild, or professional association.

Entertainment industry accreditation

INZ also maintains a list of approved arts or musical festivals and a list of approved music promoters. Performers and direct support staff attending approved festivals, or part of an act promoted by an approved promoter, can attend as visitors and don’t need to apply for a work visa.

Arts festival and music promoters

Tourism industry

We work in partnership with the tourism industry to attract high-value visitors who will benefit New Zealand’s economy. We discuss the state of tourism and its future so we can plan together to cope with expansion.

We also work with a number of tourism industry partners to streamline visa processing for some categories of visitors.

More information on tourism partnerships

Construction industry and labour hire companies

A policy has been introduced for labour hire companies seeking to employ workers. Essential Skills work visas can be granted for up to three years for lower skilled workers employed by an accredited labour hire company.

From 1 January 2016, accreditation will be compulsory for labour hire companies in the construction sector in Canterbury seeking to employ workers on Essential Skills Work Visas.

Labour hire employer accreditation

INZ has also increased the duration of work visas and relaxed conditions for workers in the Canterbury region. This gives construction workers working on the Canterbury rebuild more flexibility to move between different employers, and to work for a longer period of time.

Medical industry

INZ works with the medical industry, using technology to speed up visa processing times.

Medical professionals