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New Zealand

We've got an unique opportunity to interview the highest authority about working matters in New Zealand, Mr Keawork (pictured above). The only imposition of the qualified teacher, was to be interviewed in a car parking close to a ski station, where many cars and their moldings rubber strip would provide the snack for the Alpine bird. The teacher signed an agreement in exempting of liability for any damage that would cause in cars, and we agree without restrictions. The full interview follows below:

1) Professor, it is true that New Zealand needs skilled workers in various areas?

A: Yes for God's sake, NZ does not have enough qualified people to do all the work necessary in the country. The technology is running faster than we can train people. So we are really desperate for technicians and experts with experience in various sectors.

2) But is this happening in all sectors?

A: All sectors?! No way ! There are industries with excess of workers but in others sectors there is a really need of hundreds of qualified people. For example I had to fly hours to a town to get a veterinarian to look after me. It was very difficult to find one and when I found him, his computer broke and there was no technical expert around to fix it. On top of it he did not have a nurse to help me. My friend Kea-bab had also a problem eating a rubber from a car and broke his beak, and needed professional help and could not find one. So you can seee that there is a demand of experts in many areas, and immigration NZ has a full list of professionals in demand for long term, and short term.

3) Some people say the cause of this problem is related to the low wages in NZ, is that true, teacher?

A: Yes and no, but quite the contrary. Indeed the wages here are not the highest in the world, but they are not so bad. For example I am in the business in a mechanical workshop specialized in exchange for car moldings, and the business is booming. I live very well with my salary. The other day I met an IT analyst from England, who have received seven job offers in only two weeks here in New Zealand. He was afraid to leave the job he had there in UK and earn less here. You know what ? he told me he was saving more in NZ because house, food and transportation costs were lower than in England, so the change was great with a better quality of life.

4) But is this demand in NZ only for skilled workers or for unskilled workers as well?

A: There is some demand for unskilled jobs but very little. Farms, crops, restaurants, and even general labor is lacking in some areas but they are usually temporary. The fact is most of them may be in demand because almost nobody wants to do it or the [payment is too low so you can not save money or even pay the basics to live. 

5) Are you saying that it is easy to get a job in NZ?

A: Not really, it really depends on the qualification of the person in question. To get a casual job it is not difficult, but finding a good job well paid will depend on firstly if the person speaks a good level of English. British, Australians and Americans, have no problem with the language, but everyone else will have problems if they do not speak English well. Another point is about the qualification of the person and if you are an expert in something and speak good English, then it would be much easier to get a reliable god job in NZ. 

6) So anybody can work there?

A.: Are you crazy, of course not!  Do you think anyone can come here to take my job in my own country?! Thanks God immigration place some rules and with the exception of Australians, New Zealand only accepts workers from other countries after checking if does not have any Kiwi who can do the job. To work legally, you must get a Work Visa in the immigration office after receiving a job offer. Even students or anyone can get the visa to work. The only difference is that students has some other rules and they need to be enrolled in types of courses for more than 6 months and they can get a visa without a job offer. But in the end is the same for all,anyone can work, if they have a work visa and a job offer.

7) Is it difficult to get a work visa? What do I need? 
A:  Just need to have a little patience, with the immigration officers sometimes they are stuck with too much work. I think that they may even include a new profession in demand list soon, an immigration officer ... anyway, it's easy, and everything the person has to do is: get a job offer, take two forms, one for the applicant and one for the boss to fill. Once completed, pays the fee and the request is received. The ideal is to hand deliver so it may even come out in the same day but it may take up to one month, you never know. and if you do not have the documents in order, the process will taka longer.
8) Where are the main problems to get the visa to work? 

A: Usually it is when the boss fill out the form, and it is not very clear that they did not find a Kiwi worker to do the job. That's the main point when contracting people from other countries. The employer has to state very clearly and in written the reason/s that he could not find one person kiwi, for instance due to lack of experience of other applicants (tip to write as the reason). Also some people make mistakes while filling out the forms, wrong passport number, the expiration date, the address in New Zealand and things like that. You must fill out the forms very carefully, and review it before handling the papers. Many people think that employers do not want to fill and sign the forms, it may happen with some ones but most of them will be happy and will not deny to do it. We Kiwis, we like everything to be the right way and why someone will refuse if they are in need of that worker?

9) Professor Mr Keawork, which are the best cities to find work in NZ? 

A: Well my friend,  all the cities and regions may offer good opportunities.  Firstly the person has to decide whether want to stay in a big city or small, in the warmer or colder weather, in the country or urban area and finally to look for a job matching their skills and lifestyle. The other thing that many people do not take into consideration is that New Zealand is one whole thing, no states and that means that people living in New Zealand do not usually settle down only in one city just because of the good infrastructure, as it is practically the same all over the country. Here in NZ, people may go to where the job opportunities are, and they would move easily as you may change your clothes. Sure Auckland alone holds more than 40% of all job offers in New Zealand, but in return, Auckland is the most expensive city to live and more competitive. All other centers may have also jobs. As I said before, it depends on the lifestyle of the person and the professional skills of the person. I would say even that today's greater demands are not in Auckland; Wellington for example is a very interesting city, attracting many IT and other professionals. Doctors and nurses are missing in most rural areas and so on (well now the professor moved away as a motorcycle filled with rubber details approached.).

10) Is it true Professor, that the New Zealand government is also encouraging people who have or are getting a professional qualification in New Zealand to stay forever?

A:  Of course it's true! Imagine a country like China, that in the next 10 years will be the world's largest exporter, and compare with New Zealand. How does a country with only 4 million will compete with more than 1 billion, or any other?! We have to do something or you'll miss the boat. For NZ the easy way is to get qualified people from other countries and bring them here. If they are not qualified, they can study and get the qualification and if it is an area where is demand the person will get job offers and will be accepted for permanent residence. The only thing NZ people do not want is people breaking the rules and working illegally. Everyone who wants to contribute to the growth of New Zealand is very welcome, and will get a great quality of life here.

11) Finally professor, can you give us a clue for those wanting to come to find work in NZ?

A: Firstly please do not disappoint me and do everything within the law, and secondly, I advise to people to begin studying English right now. I also recommend to people who are considering to start a professional career, and for those who have not finished the course,  come to finish your course in New Zealand. For those who already have a profession and wanting to come live and work in New Zealand, I strongly advise them to apply for permanent residence, preferably if you could get a job offer, which would greatly facilitate your application to migrate. For those coming for temporary work, fill out your papers and get your working holiday visa if you are under 30. I'm sure people will love to live here. (In this moment the professor saw a truck full of tires and left us behind without saying goodbye).

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