MPs told NZ could double refugee intake

3:04 pm on 5 November 2015

New Zealand could take up to 1500 refugees a year with increased government funding for community services, Immigration New Zealand says.

Afghan refugees at the Mangere Refugee Centre in Auckland.

Afghan refugees at the Mangere Refugee Centre in Auckland. Photo: AFP

A parliamentary select committee today asked Immigration New Zealand spokesman Steve McGill whether the country could cope with double the current refugee intake.

Mr McGill said more refugees could be accepted, but it would take time for smaller communities to adjust.

"To a level money buys you capacity, but equally when you get into the community services that are needed and the community support around refugees and the volunteers and the church groups - it would take the community some time to build some capacity."

The Mangere Refugee Resettlement Centre was being expanded and could take in more refugees, Mr McGill said.