New Zealand Essential Skills in Demand List review 2017
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has completed its annual review of two of the Essential Skills in Demand (ESID) Lists – the Long Term Skill Shortage List (LTSSL) and the Immediate Skill Shortage List (ISSL).
The Ministry regularly reviews the ESID lists to ensure they meet the changing needs of the labour market, and to preserve opportunities for New Zealanders.
If an occupation is on a shortage list, work visa applications for positions in that occupation from suitably qualified and experienced migrants are not subject to an individual labour market test. A labour market test means that an employer must demonstrate that no suitable New Zealanders are available to fill or be trained for each individual position. The lists help provide certainty for employers and potential migrants, and are a useful indicator to potential migrants of skill shortages in New Zealand.
Long Term Skill Shortage List
The LTSSL identifies occupations that have an absolute (sustained and ongoing) shortage of skilled workers both globally and throughout New Zealand. Migrants who gain employment in one of these occupations may be granted an LTSSL Work to Residence or an Essential Skills work visa. Migrants applying for residence under the Skilled Migrant Category may gain bonus points towards their application if they have an offer of employment or work experience in an area of absolute skill shortage identified on the LTSSL.
The outcomes of the review of the LTSSL are to:
Remove five occupations
- Forest Scientist
- Petroleum Engineer
- Renal Medicine Specialist
Retain two occupations that were included in the review
- Chemical Engineer
- Materials Engineer
Submissions to add four occupations (Hairdresser, Motorcycle Mechanic, Registered Nurse (Mental Health), and Sports Coach or Instructor) to the LTSSL have been declined.
Immediate Skill Shortage List
The ISSL identifies occupations that have an immediate shortage of skilled workers either throughout New Zealand or in certain regions. Migrants wishing to work in occupations on the ISSL may be granted work visas under Essential Skills instructions if they meet the specified qualifications and/or experience requirements.
The outcomes of the review of the ISSL are to:
Add 12 occupations
Accountant (General) (a)
Carpenter and Joiner (b)
Fibrous Plasterer (b)
Motor Mechanic (General) (b)
Roof Plumber (c)
Roof Tiler (c)
Solid Plasterer (b)
Vehicle Painter (b)
- only for the Auckland/Upper North Island, Wellington and Canterbury/Upper South Island regions
- for all regions of New Zealand
- only for the Auckland/Upper North Island, Waikato/Bay of Plenty, Canterbury/Upper South Island and Otago/Southland regions
Remove five occupations
- Dental Technician
- Medical Laboratory Technician (Phlebotomy and Histology Technicians)
- Pharmacy Technician
- Poultry Farmer
Retain five occupations that were included in the review
- Metal Casting Trades Worker (Foundry Moulder)
- Registered Nurse (Aged Care)
- Resident Medical Officer
Submissions to add Hair or Beauty Salon Manager to the ISSL have been declined.
Timing of changes
The ESID List changes will take effect in February 2018. Further work is currently being carried out to review the requirements which migrants need to satisfy to apply for a work visa using the skill shortage lists. This includes a review of qualifications in association with the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, and some other changes to ensure that the requirements for using the lists are appropriate for the shortages.