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Wage Hike in New Zealand: Immigration Rules Align with NZD$31.61 Median Hourly Rate

Publish Date: 22/02/2024

New Zealand has introduced a new median wage rate of NZD$31.61 per hour, which will be integrated into parts of the immigration system starting February 28, 2024.

Wage thresholds for the Skilled Migrant Category, Green List Straight to Residence, Work to Residence visas, and Parent Category residence class visa will align with the median wage of NZD$31.61 per hour on the specified date.

The Transport Sector Work to Residence Visa wage threshold will also increase, excluding bus drivers, in line with the new median wage. However, the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) will remain at its current rate of NZD$29.66 per hour, as announced by the Government in December.

Consistently, this pause applies to AEWV-linked work visas set at or indexed to the median wage rate from February 2023 (NZD$29.66 per hour). This includes Partner of a Worker Work Visa, variation of conditions for AEWVs, legacy Essential Skills work visas, interim visas under the Skilled Migrant Category, and Partner of Worker work visas, as well as Subsequent Migrant Exploitation Protection Visas.

Holders of AEWVs paid at the paused wage rate (NZD$29.66 per hour) may continue accruing work experience for Skilled Residence, but they must meet the skilled residence pathway rate aligned with the median wage upon application. The future AEWV applicants aiming for Skilled Residence pathways must meet the higher threshold of NZD$31.61 per hour instead of the lower AEWV requirement.

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