NZ tourism, immigration hit fresh records in calendar 2016

New Zealand saw record numbers of tourists and immigrants in 2016, with more migrants coming in on work visas and more holidaymakers than ever before, and economists expect migrant inflows to keep rising.

Annual net migration hit 70,600 in December 2016, with the biggest net migrant gains from China, India, the UK and the Philippines. Migrant arrivals rose 4% to 127,300 in the year, also a new record, while migrant departures dipped 0.5% to 56,700.

Short-term visitor arrivals, which includes tourists, people visiting family and friends and people travelling for work, reached 3.5 million in the year ended Dec. 31, up 12% from the year earlier, Statistics NZ said.

New Zealand has imposed tougher criteria for skilled migrants and cracked down on applications for student visas over increased concerns about the level of immigration. At the same time, the government has extolled the benefits of immigration, with a swelling population stoking more activity and record inflows of tourists underpinning an economy growing at a rapid pace. At the same time, a rising population has posed problems for policymakers by fuelling demand for an already-stretched housing market in Auckland, while restraining wage growth.

New Zealand Immigration

Today’s data show the most popular country of origin for permanent and long-term arrivals was Australia, with some 26,000 migrants coming to New Zealand in the year but this was offset by about 24,000 long-term or permanent departures across the Tasman in the course of the year. A net 10,310 migrants arrived from China in 2016, a 16% lift on 2015, while a net 8900 came from India, a drop of 33% on the year earlier. There was a 54% jump in net migration from the UK to 5600.

“The past year has seen a marked lift in arrivals from the UK (up nearly 2000 people on last year’s levels) and China. The increase in arrivals is mainly due to more people coming on work or residency visa, which has offset a decline in the number of international students,” Satish Ranchhod, senior economist at Westpac, said in a note. “Second, the level of departures of New Zealand citizens is currently at very low levels, while the number of New Zealanders returning from offshore has risen steadily.

“These trends are expected to continue to some time, with New Zealand’s positive economic story, including its labour market, making it a very attractive destination. We expect net migration inflows to remain strong for some time,” Mr Ranchhod said.

Of the new migrants who arrived in the year, a net 33,900, or 48%, settled in Auckland, followed by a net 9.6% who moved to Canterbury, net 5.2% going to Wellington and net 3.9% settling in Waikato.

There was a 10% lift in work visas given out in 2016 to 41,600, with that category of visa accounting for the most migrant arrivals in the year, ahead of New Zealand and Australian citizens at 37,700. Student visas dropped 12% to 24,600, while residence visas increased 18% to 16,500.

Today’s data show a 16.2% uplift in the number of visitors holidaying in New Zealand in the year to 1.8 million, with most holidaymakers from Australia, China or the US. On an annual basis, Australians made up 562,000 of the 1.8 million holidaymakers, while China was the second-biggest pool at 311,000.

Business visitors rose 1.4% in December from the same month a year earlier to 17,800, and increased 5.2% on an annual basis to 289,000, about two-thirds of whom came from across the Tasman. Source: nbr

Australia seeks deal on Trump visa ban

Australian officials are seeking to strike a deal with the United States to secure preferential treatment for dual nationals who hail from so-called terror-source nations.

Canada and the UK have struck agreements with the Trump administration after the US president issued an executive order banning the US from taking in people from seven Muslim-majority countries: Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Somalia.

The US Department of Homeland Security told reporters on the weekend 109 people who were in transit on planes had been denied entry and 173 had not been allowed to board their planes overseas.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull told reporters in Canberra on Monday if individual cases arose Australia would take it up with US authorities.

However, he said he did not want to become a commentator on US domestic policies.

Immediately after the press conference, Labor foreign affairs spokeswoman Penny Wong wrote to Foreign Minister Julie Bishop seeking advice on what action had been taken on behalf of dual nationals impacted by the Trump decision.

Two hours after Mr Turnbull’s comments, Ms Bishop issued a brief statement saying: “I have directed our officials in Washington DC to work with US officials to ensure any preferential treatment extended to any other country in relation to travel and entry to the United States is extended to Australia.”

Australian Immigration

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade says it has not had any consular assistance requests from Australians unable to board aircraft.

The International Refugee Assistance Project said a 17-year-old orphan from Afghanistan, whose entire family was killed by a land mine in Kabul, was not allowed on his flight home to the US.

Media reports have also told of American university students being stopped from boarding aircraft.

The executive order bars people from the seven nations from entering the US for the next 90 days and suspends the admission of all refugees for 120 days.

There are also critics from within Mr Trump’s own Republican party.

Chairman of the US Senate committee on armed services and former presidential candidate John McCain said in a statement the confusion at American airports showed the order was “not properly vetted”.

“We should not stop green-card holders from returning to the country they call home. We should not stop those who have served as interpreters for our military and diplomats from seeking refuge in the country they risked their lives to help.

“And we should not turn our backs on those refugees who have been shown through extensive vetting to pose no demonstrable threat to our nation, and who have suffered unspeakable horrors, most of them women and children.”

Senator McCain said it would also become a “self-inflicted wound in the fight against terrorism”.

Counter-terrorism expert and Labor MP Dr Anne Aly said if the decision was about national security, it targeted the wrong countries.

The men involved in the September 11 attacks on the US came from Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Mr Turnbull also confirmed he did not discuss the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal with Mr Trump in Sunday’s 25-minute phone call, as the issue had been canvassed in a previous call.

Mr Trump last week signed an executive order to pull the US out of the 12-country agreement.

Labor leader Bill Shorten said while the US was entitled to go about its business without interference from Australia, and vice versa, there were some issues “where silence will be interpreted as agreement”.

“For that reason, I need to say Mr Trump’s ban on refugees based upon their religion or country is appalling and ought to be ended as soon as possible,” Mr Shorten said in a statement on Monday.

“I urge Malcolm Turnbull to reconsider what our nation’s position ought to be and rethink what he should be saying on our behalf. It’s time for leadership.”

Ai Group chief Innes Willox told AAP there would be a lot of uncertainty in the early days of the Trump policy and Australian business people should get advice on their visa status.

“The breadth of the US visa ban could catch some people unawares as it applies to country of birth and not what passport you hold,” Mr Willox said.

“Many regular travellers may well have visas stamped in their passports from the banned countries and this could well impact on their eligibility to enter the US or at least make arrival difficult.

“The visa rules will add to the complexity of doing business in the US, but that said, restrictions on visas to many countries are nothing new and part of the risk of doing business.” Source: news

Benefits of Canadian Immigration

Immigration to Canada

Canadian Immigration is the most favorite immigration all over the world, and people choose this country as for their permanent resident destination. There are a lot of benefits of this Immigration which motivates the immigrants to move to Canada. There are different programs which allow immigrants to get immigration at different stages. On the other hand, Canada also wants to boost the economy to allow more and more immigrants to enter through different immigration programs.

There are 8 provinces of Canada which facilitate the immigrants to get their immigration quickly. Canada is a multicultural Country that’s why people do not feel a stranger live there after getting Canadian Immigration. There are a lot of opportunities to get a job as well as to invest money in Canada. You can enjoy the good life, friendly atmosphere, and adjustable social living there.

Canadian Immigration

Let’s discuss “Benefits of Canadian Immigration

You can enjoy a series of benefits when you get Canadian Immigration; some of them are as under:

  • Security
  • Different Types of Immigration
  • Medical Facilities
  • Excellent Pay Rates for Labor
  • Multicultural People
  • Career Opportunities
  • Canadian Citizenship
  • Permanent Resident Visa
  • Freely Travel Across the World
  • Sponsorship for Family

Security

You feel secure and move freely where ever you want to go or visit any place in Canada. Every person in Canada whether citizen or immigrants are equal in the eyes of law and enjoys all immunities which Canadian Government offers to its inhabitants.

Different Types of Immigration

As you know that Canada has 8 provinces and each province is eligible for Provincial Nominee Program. After getting PNP certificate you can get extra points which will help you get Canadian Permanent Resident in Canada.

Medical Facilities

Medical facilities are provided to every citizen by the state and there are community health centers in each community. This is an important benefit of Canada immigration. Moreover, this benefit is also available for Canadian Immigration for Pakistani individuals.

Excellent Pay Rates for Labor

If you are a working person and looking for a work in Canada, the pay rates in Canada are very attractive. There are many opportunities in each sector for a job as well as for work for immigrants.

Multicultural People

Canadian People are multicultural and easily adjust immigrants in their society. Their attitude is very friendly towards immigrants and this is the reason for immigrants to make Canada as their immigration dream.

Career Opportunities

Canada wants to boost an economy that’s why Canada allows more and more immigrants to enter. Immigration to Canada opens many doors for those immigrants who are looking for career opportunities in Canada.

Canadian Citizenship

If you want to settle in Canada then Canadian Immigration is the best destination among all immigrations. After having language skills, work skills, and ability to invest makes you eligible for Citizenship in Canada.

 

Permanent Resident Visa

 

When you become eligible for Canada Permanent Resident Visa, PR gives you certain rights which allow you to get benefits of North American Free Trade Agreement. If you are a skilled individual and successfully become a citizen of Canada then you can enjoy all advantages of working in flexible TN visa and its status.

 

Freely Travel Across the World

 

When you got the status of Canadian Citizen and you got Canadian passport then you can enjoy a freely travel across the world. By holding Canadian Citizenship with Canadian Passport you don’t require any specific permission for a limited period and can stay in EU countries as well as in G-8 Countries.

 

Sponsorship for Family

 

You can also apply for family sponsorship along with your application for Immigration. By this benefit, you can sponsor your spouse and your children up to 19 years. You can sponsor them for PR as well as for Canada Super Visa facilities.

 

So, these are the most prominent benefits of Canadian Immigration. If you are planning for Immigration to Canada or for Canada Express Entry this article will admire you to make Canada as your immigration destination. If you are a Pakistani individual and looking for Canadian Immigration for Pakistani, you must direct your efforts towards Canada and make it your first priority.

Colombian punk rocker seeks protective asylum in Australia

Immigration to Australia

It wasn’t London Calling but Australia for a punk rocker activist from Colombia set to be granted asylum after authorities ruled that his adherence to punk rock’s clothing, music and lifestyle made him vulnerable to persecution in his home country.

The man, who cannot be identified, told the Administrative Appeals Tribunal he first embraced the punk scene by listening to The Ramones and The Clash and wearing boots instead of shoes. He said he started dressing in punk clothing about 2002 and people crossed the street to avoid him.

The man said people told him he was “evil and a demon and a devil” and he had difficulty finding work because of his clothing, hairstyle and piercings but these “showed who he really was”.

The Colombian, who arrived in Australia in 2012 on a student visa, told the tribunal he had not come voluntarily but following an attack in his home country.

Australian Immigration

He said unlike skinhead punk rockers, he considered himself a leftist/socialist, and was against the abuse of animals, against poverty and all for equality.

He told the tribunal he had been involved in more than 50 student protests in different parts of the country and had been arrested and held for questioning but never jailed.

The man’s father, who lives in Australia, said his son ran a 100 per cent risk of being targeted if he returned to Colombia.

He said his son had been targeted because of how he dressed and his adherence to the punk subculture, and if he were to go back to Colombia, paramilitary groups would either make him disappear or would kill him and the father would never be able to find the son’s body to bury him.

In his judgment, tribunal member John Cipolla said the man did not appear to have a significant profile as an activist to bring him to the adverse attention of paramilitary and other groups that targeted student activists, but the Colombian had countered this argument by stating he stood out from the crowd as a punk and his profile had been raised by organising several protest events.

“The tribunal is prepared to afford the applicant the benefit of the doubt in accepting he was the subject of an attempted kidnapping in November 2008 and that this was attributable to his student activism and … his punk attire,” Mr ­Cipolla said. “The tribunal also accepts that the applicant possesses several over­lapping characteristics that would heighten his overall risk profile in Colombia, including his adherence to the lifestyle, clothing and music of punk rock and his student activism … making the applicant a person vulnerable to persecution.”

He remitted the case back to the Department of Immigration for reconsideration.

Source: theaustralian

President Donald Trump supporter Peter Thiel’s NZ citizenship raises questions

Immigration to New Zealand

The news that billionaire investor and Trump supporter Peter Thiel has acquired New Zealand citizenship has triggered questions in Parliament.

The surprising news of Thiel’s Kiwi citizenship, first broken by the Herald yesterday, has drawn international attention with the New York Times, Mashable and Gizmodo noting the development.

Labour Party immigration spokesman Ian Lees-Galloway said the revelation – that Thiel’s 2015 purchase of a 193 hectare estate on Lake Wanaka didn’t require Overseas Investment Office approval because the buyer was a citizen – raised more questions than it answered.

Lees-Galloway said another wealthy North American import – film director James Cameron – had drawn considerable notice when living in New Zealand, raising questions over why Thiel didn’t attract attention.

“I can’t imagine someone of Thiel’s stature and wealth and not being noticed for five years, it just doesn’t seem very likely,” he said.

This morning Lees-Galloway said he lodged written questions in Parliament with Minister of Internal Affairs Peter Dunne seeking to know when Thiel was granted citizenship, under what grounds and whether the venture capitalist billionaire was a resident for tax purposes.

Immigration to New Zealand

The Herald understands, due to the Parliamentary break, the questions will be required to be answered by February 15.

According to the Department of Internal Affairs website, citizenship requires people to have lived in New Zealand for most of the past five years, or have been born in New Zealand, or have New Zealand parents.

Filings to the Companies Office, requiring directors to provide their residential address, have Thiel only list United States addresses. Thiel is widely reported to have been born in Frankfurt, Germany, to German parents who emigrated to the United States when he was an infant.

An alternate path to the above requires the Minister of Immigration to personally sign off and agree that granting the individual citizenship “would be in the public interest because of exceptional circumstances of a humanitarian or other nature”.

Inquiries by the Herald sent to government departments managing the case have yet to result in a substantive response.

The Ministry of Immigration, which handles residency applications – usually a precursor for citizenship – declined to provide any information about the Thiel case.

Immigration New Zealand said that for privacy reasons it could make no comment,” a spokeswoman said.

The Department of Internal Affairs, which deals with citizenship issues, said late this morning they had only just excavated the Thiel folder from storage and were still formulating a response.

Questions sent yesterday to representative of Thiel were answered by Jeremiah Hall of Torch Communications. “I’ll be back in touch if we have any comment,” he said.

No further correspondence has been forthcoming.

Source: nzherald