14 Oct 2013

Speedy visas issued for farm irrigation technicians

6:47 am on 14 October 2013

The irrigation sector has praised the Government's response to last month's Canterbury windstorms saying the Immigration New Zealand is helping get the necessary workers into the country as quickly as possible.

About 800 irrigators in Canterbury were damaged in the September storm - many requiring specialist centre pivot technicians to fix them.

Irrigation NZ chief executive Andrew Curtis says the immigration department has come to the party by fast-tracking work visas for the technicians.

He says two technicians have come from the US - and more are on their way - and four have arrived from South Africa.

Mr Curtis says container loads of the specialist parts required to fix the irrigators have been arriving in the country in the last few weeks.