Information about skilled residence visas mistakenly posted on Immigration New Zealand’s website appears to be an advance copy of the government’s new residence criteria.
About 34,000 people are waiting to find out when expressions of interest (EOI) ballots for the skilled migrant and parent categories will re-start.
It has emerged the Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi made decisions at least two months ago about reopening both residence streams to new applicants. EOI selections – when migrants are invited to apply for residence – were frozen in March last year.
The details posted online about skilled residence visas show more points being allocated to jobs needing occupational registration such as nurses and teachers, or in areas of absolute skill shortage.
The information has since been taken down. Immigration New Zealand (INZ) has refused to confirm or deny the uploaded points calculator showed part of the new criteria, and the minister has not responded to requests for comment.
Immigration adviser David Cooper said it appeared to be an advance copy of the new policy and would suggest INZ had been preparing its website for the changes.
He said it signalled an increase in the current points threshold was on the cards, and that would mean some people would no longer qualify for residence.
“Is it a precursor for what the minister is about to announce? I don’t know, but it’s certainly along the lines of some of the noise that we’ve been hearing in terms of points for jobs requiring occupational registration, jobs in areas of long-term skill shortage.
“Undoubtedly, if they go ahead with these changes and push the pass mark up, not all of those 11,000 expressions of interest will get selected.”