New Zealand is nestled in the South Pacific Ocean 1,600 kms (1,000 miles) from Australia, its closest neighbour and friend. There are just over four million New Zealanders, and every single one is either an immigrant or descended from one. By most other standards, New Zealand is a very young country, with European settlement on a large scale only occurring over the last 150 years.
English is the main written and spoken language in New Zealand – with a number of different accents! Maori is also an
officially recognised language and is spoken fluently by over 4% of the population. Being in the Southern
Hemisphere, its seasons are completely opposite to countries north of the equator. Winter is June through August and
our Summer is between December and March.
New Zealand is a modern parliamentary democracy based on the Westminster cabinet system. New Zealand’s Parliament is currently made up of 120 Members representing eight parties. With majestic mountain ranges, sweeping plains, fjords, imposing native forests, crystal clear inland lakes, miles of golden sand beaches and numerous bays dotted around one of the longest coastlines in the world.
New Zealand enjoys a well deserved reputation as a liberal and tolerant society.
There are four main entry categories available for people wishing to migrate to New Zealand: Skilled Migrant, Work to Residence, Family and Business.
Prior to applying for residence you may wish to come to New Zealand temporarily to find out more about life here. This may be as a tourist, as a student undertaking a course of study or as a worker on a temporary working visa.
Immigration New Zealand charges processing fees for applications under all entry categories. Under a number of bilateral agreement, there are some countries that have fee exemptions. These include the US, Japan, Italy, Austria & Finland. Skilled Migrant Category fees explained When you apply for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category, there are three key payments that you’ll need to make. Expression of Interest There are two different non-refundable application fees for submitting an Expression of Interest. If you apply online it will cost you NZ$400 or if you apply using the hard copy (paper) application, you will pay NZ$500.
Application for Residence If you are invited to apply for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category, you will need to pay a fee to lodge your application.
Migrant Levy Please be aware that if you are approved for residence you will have to pay a migrant levy (in addition to the standard visa/permit application fees) before you will receive your residence visa or permit.
The purpose of the migrant levy is to contribute to the funding of programmes intended to assist the successful settlement of migrants. For instance the levy funds help with costs related to the Language Line telephone interpreting service, the Migrant Employment Assistance service and the Citizens Advice Bureau Language Link service. The funds also include a contribution towards English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) tuition for adults and children.
The migrant levy is also used to carry out research into settlement issues and the impacts of immigration. For instance, the Longitudinal Immigration Survey: New Zealand (LisNZ) and short-term research on settlement and immigration.
The information gained from this research helps Immigration New Zealand develop immigration policies that can best help migrants settle in and contribute to New Zealand.
The levy is NZ$300 for people aged five and over, and NZ$150 for children under five years of age. If there are more than four people included in a single application, the migrant levy is only payable by the four oldest family members.
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