27 Jun 2013

Imimgration New Zealand says Samoa quota system works

1:39 pm on 27 June 2013

New Zealand's immigration department has defended its record on processing Samoan migrants under the quota scheme.

The area manager Michael Carley says 64 percent of quota applications are processed within 30 days and sometimes there are delays as people may have issues meeting the criteria, which include good health and real job prospects.

Labour MP Su'a William Sio says many find their job offers have dried up by the time they arrive.

But Mr Carley says as new residents, the migrants have the same support as other New Zealanders through Work and Income.

He says this year, New Zealand published 536 successful ballot numbers, which represents about 1300 people who have been granted the chance to apply to migrate this year.

"We work closely with employers and with the Pacific community here to try and ensure that as many jobs as possible that are offered are sustainable. If there are delays, which can be caused by health issues, for example, that might impact on whether a job's available. But remember people can submit a second job offer if their original job offer is no longer available."

Michael Carleyof New Zealand's immigration department