A decidedly unofficial repository of the news, views, and attitudes of some young people who quite like NZ First.
Thursday, September 8, 2016
60% Of Migrants Not On Skill-Shortages List - Why John Key REALLY Wants More Immigration
About a month ago, I lodged an Official Information Act request with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment. The object of my inquiry was to attempt to discover just how many of the people applying for New Zealand Residency were actually on the long-term skill shortages list. Or, in other words, how many people coming here were bringing skills and aptitudes which we desperately need, and which can't otherwise be easily found in the general New Zealand Population.
The answer, somewhat to my surprise, was that the figure was around 40%. Or, phrased another way, a clear majority of migrants to New Zealand - some 60% - are not people whom we vitally need on an economic basis.
Why this matters is because for the longest time large-scale immigration commensurate with a figure the size of the population of Nelson turning up in our midst every year was justified to us on the basis that these people were bringing essential skills which we needed - and that our economy would surely begin to grind to a halt if we were to attempt to seriously curtail migration numbers.
That has been the argument issuing forth from the Government Benches every time somebody from New Zealand First, Labour, or civil society in general have sought to suggest that untrammeled population growth through immigration is at least partially responsible for spiraling Auckland house-prices and ongoing escalating pressure upon already over-subscribed infrastructure and social spending. (And, to be fair, it's not just the Opposition who've noticed this happening - even the Prime Minister now accepts that large-scale immigration has placed a strain upon infrastructure)
From the perspective of a migrant worker, this is all obviously seriously bad. But the effects and ambit of what's been going on here don't just affect them. Instead, the net impact of adding tens of thousands of extra workers to our labour market have an impact upon all those who participate in same - not just the more recent arrivals.
We know from the basic and elementary economic law of 'supply and demand' that the more supply there is to a market, the lower the price of the commodity in question will be. Labour is the service being supplied here. Adding supply - particularly supply which is buyable/hirable at a price rather below that which existing supply is available at - drags down the equilibrium price of that labour. In order to remain competitive with those who are willing (or less-willingly forced) to work for lower wages, workers must demand less pay and refrain from attempting to negotiate for pay-increases.
The twin obvious justifications for why National continues to allow in thousands of migrant labourers who aren't on the long-term skill shortages list thus ought to be plainly obvious.
It's because our Government are working hand-in-glove with their economically exploitative employment-offering mates to attempt to artificially depress both pay and conditions in the broader New Zealand labour market - for everyone, not just migrant workers.
Ever since the roll-out of the Rogernomics economic "reforms" in the 1980s, take-home pay in real terms has been declining for workers in New Zealand. We have also witnessed ongoing attempts by successive Governments to corral and constrain Union power. But while they have evidently accomplished oh so much economic devastation for the ordinary person through direct legislative instruments, since the halting of the 'mainstream' Neoliberal 'revolution' in the mid-late 1990s following the running out of steam of Ruthanasia etc, more insidious means to further the same broad objectives have had to be pursued.
It is deeply regrettable that so many come to our shores in pursuit of a 'better life', only to find exploitation and marginalization awaiting them. I mean no malice nor antipathy towards our migrant populations and those seeking accession to Permanent Residency by writing this. But the grand and impersonal macroeconomic forces that our extant Neoliberal overlords have unleashed - which push and which pulverize propelled in no small part through population-flows drawn from across the ocean - do indeed deserve calling out and commentary upon.
It is, after all, our Government's fault rather than the 'malaise' of any migrant that we are in this situation to begin with. And therefore our collective responsibility, as voters and as citizens, to penetrate the murk and see what they're actually up to.
The figure of only 40% of those applying to gain Residency here as migrants who're able to meet essential, long-term skill-vacancies helps to show us quite conclusively that National's priorities when it comes to immigration are not exactly in the interests of ordinary New Zealanders.