New Zealand delays updated skills shortage list

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The results of a biannual review for New Zealand's two skills shortage lists used in the assessment of skilled migrant applications have been delayed.

The revised Essential Skills in Demand Lists, which include the Long Term Skill Shortage List and the Immediate Skill Shortage List were scheduled to come into effect on 01 December 2008. It is now expected that the updated lists will not come into effect until 03 March 2009.

The postponement was made to allow Immigration New Zealand to upgrade their systems over the coming months in an effort to ensure "stability" in the application process.

The delay is not expected to affect a scheduled review in July of 2009.

New Zealand's Skilled Migrant Category is an immigration scheme designed to attract skilled migrants from across the globe to help offset shortages in the labor market.

Individuals who score enough points on a points test can enter themselves into a pool of applicants that are picked on a fort-nightly basis.

Chosen applicants are then invited to a come to New Zealand for an interview for a permanent residence visa.