Labour Party leader Andrew Little would be happy to see foreign workers who are brought into the country to help build houses in Auckland qualify for permanent residency.
Mr Little said there neededs to be a mix of New Zealanders and overseas labour trained up to do the job.
With a massive building project over a 10-year period, there will be people coming into the country to work, he said.
"Some will want to stay here - that's a good thing."
Mr Little said a lot of people came from offshore to help out with the Christchurch rebuild and as they spent time here they qualified also to apply for permanent residency. That was a perfectly acceptable option to take, he said.