Labour to cut immigration buy up to 30,000 people a year

By Heta Gardiner

 Labour is making a promise to cut immigration in a move to slow New Zealand's rampant growth.

Immigration has created pressure on Auckland and the country's infrastructure making it a major issue in the upcoming election. “Labour will change the immigration rules that will reduce numbers arriving here by 20,000 – 30,000 a year,” said Labour leader Andrew Little.

Labour say they will limit the number of residency via low-level study VISA's. It is hoped this will open up jobs to the 90,000 New Zealanders that are currently unemployed or in education training. “We need a fresh approach that makes immigration a win/win for everyone, ” says Labours leader.

Labour announced previously that they will cut work VISA's to New Zealand, leaving more jobs available to New Zealanders. But there was some scepticism over that announcement given Labour also promised to build 100,000 homes over 10 years to ease the pressure on housing.

Mr Little says you can have both. “Today’s announcement complements our plan to deliver 100,000 affordable homes each year. To that end, we’re going to introduce a kiwi build VISA to ensure we have the workforce needed to kick start Labour’s housing program.”

The latest Statistics New Zealand figures show migrants continue to flock to New Zealand in record numbers. It shows around 70,000 settle here, the majority were bound for Auckland.