August 22, 2015
Immigration is important
Immigration is important
I was amazed to learn that a migration boom is upon us as more Indian and Chinese students arrive in New Zealand and a bunch of Kiwis who have had their fill of Australia head home to set up shop and reconnect with whanau. Immigration is important and I believe we must allow more migrants into New Zealand if we are to grow as a country, both economically and culturally.
This is not a stand against New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters or those types of policies but more a reality check. The latest annual migration figures showed 117,100 migrant arrivals, and 57,500 migrant departures.
So that’s around 60,000 on the plus side.
For many of those returning home, they are doing so on the back of the Kiwi economy performing better than Australia. Not all our kids look to Australia as the place to be or to make money. And to me, keeping our young talent at home, and allowing a steady stream of young and talented Chinese and Indian students, can only have good and positive results for the country.
You will get a few of the gloomy economists say be cautious with the figures and don’t read too much into this hype.
But New Zealand has lot going for it and why shouldn’t we celebrate in our achievements, whether that be a stable economy or the fact that people from all over the world want to settle down here.
In the 2013 July year, there was a net loss of almost 30,000 to Australia. In the latest July year that was down to less than 900. What a difference two years can make.
And that turnaround are figures that even gloomy economists will find hard to argue with.
The anti-immigration mob will say more migrant’s means less jobs for Kiwis and a higher unemployment rate. Which is true but there are other benefits that we sometimes forget for example it also could mean more growth, as many parents of the migrant students end up investing in local businesses.
However while I’m all for more migrants, we must stay vigilant on the calibre of person that we let into New Zealand. And of course I am in agreement with politicians like Winston and Andrew Little who want foreign ownership restricted or stopped altogether. Some migrants though have brought real benefits
Take Hollywood movie mogul James Cameron who has made a great contribution financially to the Wairarapa area with property and business investment. So too has the Kauri Cliffs owner Julian Robertson, who also built another five star resort in the Hawke’s Bay and been an active investor in wineries in Queenstown.
Of course not all migrants are going to be billionaires but I feel sometimes when we talk immigration our emotions and sense of Nationalism to often get in the way of common sense. Yes we should protect our sovereignty and we must at all times prioritise Kiwi jobs before worrying about immigrants’ rights but managed immigration is important and our country will only be better for it.
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