24 Jul 2007

NZ company pleased with seasonal employer scheme

9:29 am on 24 July 2007

An apple company using New Zealand's Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme with Pacific countries says it will employ more workers next year.

Mr Apple New Zealand Limited has employed 250 workers from Solomon Islands, Tonga, Samoa and Nauru this year.

The company's Labour manager Alistair Jamieson says prior to the labour mobility scheme, it was difficult to employ enough staff for the apple picking season.

He says employing staff from the Pacific to work for the Hawkes Bay company, has been ideal.

"They are very very keen to learn, and keen to work quite hard. They come in, they want to be here, we want them to be here, so they are pretty committed to doing a good job."

Mr Apple New Zealand's Alistair Jamieson

The 2007 Forum Economic Ministers' meeting has recommended more Pacific countries push for some kind of labour mobility arrangement with Australia and New Zealand, at the October forum meeting in Tonga.