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NZ worker shortage eased by reopening Pacific visas

The New Zealand Government has reopened two Pacific island visa categories to address labour shortages in New Zealand.

Following the Pandemic of Covid-19, the Samoan Quota and Pacific Access Category will open back up in October.

Both visas are operated through a ballot system. People whose registration forms are drawn from the ballot may be invited to apply for New Zealand residency, and their residency applications will be considered if they apply within eight months of receiving their invitation.

Each year, 1100 Samoan citizens aged 18-45 can apply for the Samoan Quota Resident Visa, while 250 Tongan citizens, 250 Fijian citizens, 75 Kiribati citizens, and 75 Tuvaluan citizens can apply for the Pacific Access Category Resident Visa. A minimum age requirement of 18-45 is also required.

Michael Wood, minister for immigration, said: "This is a significant milestone, as both the Pacific Access Category and Samoan Quota have been in place for many years.

"It recognises the historical relationship between New Zealand and the Pacific, and we are thrilled to see these categories opening again to our Pacific neighbours.”

"We also recognise the impact the move to online will have in some circumstances, and work has been done to ensure there are resources available to ensure registrants have all the information they need to apply online with ease."

The Samoan Quota will be open from October 3 to November 2, and the Pacific Access Category will be open from October 5 to November 4.



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