Net migrant departures of 111,000 puts economic recovery at risk

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Mon, 21 Sep 2020, 12:55PM
Sociologist Professor Paul Spoonley says the departure of migrant workers will impact on post-Covid economic recovery. Photo / Doug Sherring
Sociologist Professor Paul Spoonley says the departure of migrant workers will impact on post-Covid economic recovery. Photo / Doug Sherring

Net migrant departures of 111,000 puts economic recovery at risk

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Mon, 21 Sep 2020, 12:55PM

Covid-19 border restrictions could result in a fraction of seasonal worker arrivals, with the shortage having the potential to cripple the economic recovery.

Massey University sociologist Professor Paul Spoonley says there were nearly 111,000 more departures than arrivals between March and August.

He told Mike Hosking we've gone from gaining seven thousand permanent migrants and 300,000 temporary ones - to now losing a 100,000. 

"Whichever party is in Government is going to have to move very fast to work out how we match the people that they need to come into the country, and how we quarantine them."

He says due to Covid-19 the recognised seasonal employment scheme brought in around 3000 less workers this year.

"I'm in Central Otago at the moment. So Central, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, they've got billion dollar crops waiting to be processed and pipped, so who's going to do that work?"

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