Investing and doing business in New Zealand

New Zealand's business migration categories are designed to contribute to economic growth, attracting 'smart' capital and business expertise to New Zealand, and enabling experienced business people to buy or establish businesses in New Zealand.


People wishing to invest funds in a business and live in New Zealand can apply for residence under our Investor/Investor Plus categories, or apply for a visitor visa valid for up to two years under our Temporary Retirement Category.

Migrant Investment categories

Our Migrant Investment categories are for investors who want to gain residence in New Zealand.

There are two categories: Investor Plus (Investor 1 Category), and Investor (Investor 2 Category). Compare the basic criteria below:

Key requirements Investor Plus Investor
Maximum age No requirement 65 or younger
Business experience No requirement Minimum of three years
Investment funds NZ$10 million invested in New Zealand for three years NZ$1.5 million invested in New Zealand for four years
Settlement funds No requirement NZ$1 million (transfer not required)
- an English speaking background, or
Principal applicant's English language No requirement - an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test report with an overall band score of three or more, or
Family member's English language No requirement - a competent user of English
Same as principal applicant or pre-purchase ESOL tuition
Minimum time in New Zealand 44 days in New Zealand in each of the last two years of the three-year investment period. 146 days in New Zealand in each of the last three years of the four-year investment period.
Health and character Applicants under both categories must meet health and character requirements.  

Temporary Retirement Category requirements

All applicants - you and your partner (if applicable) - must meet our health and character requirements. The other requirements are set out below.


You (the principal applicant) must be aged 66 or over.

Travel and/or health insurance

You will need to hold comprehensive travel and/or health insurance for the duration of your stay.

Investment funds and/or assets

You must nominate investment funds and/or assets equivalent to at least NZ$0.75 million and undertake to invest them in New Zealand for a period of two years.

You must also nominate NZ$0.5 million for maintenance funds, and be able to show an annual income of NZ$60,000 at the time of your application.

You will need to be able to provide evidence showing that your investment and maintenance funds and/or assets are owned by you or jointly by you and your partner.

You will also need to be able to provide evidence showing that your intended investment funds:

  • Are unencumbered, ie not subject to any mortgage, lien, charge and/or encumbrance (whether equitable or otherwise) or any other creditor claims
  • Have been earned or acquired legally
  • Are transferable through the banking system (we will not be able to approve your application if you are unable to transfer funds to New Zealand through the banking system)

You will need to be able to provide verifiable documents to show that the funds you transfer to New Zealand came from your nominated funds and/or assets. You will need to place your investment funds in an acceptable investment(s) in New Zealand.

After your application is approved

If your application is approved you (the principal applicant) must to retain your investment funds in an acceptable investment(s) for two years.


Experienced business people wishing to purchase or establish a business in New Zealand can apply for a work visa under our Long Term Business Visa Category and then apply for residence under the Entrepreneur/Entrepreneur Plus categories.

Employees of a relocating business

If you are a key employee in a business that is relocating to New Zealand, you may be eligible to apply for residence under the Employees of Relocating Business Category. This category facilitates the granting of residence to employees of businesses relocating to New Zealand, who do not qualify for residence under any existing categories.