The Government has postponed a number of visa programmes, including selections for Expressions of Interest (EOI) for the Skilled Migrant Category (SMC).
This means that the processing times for applications under these programmes will be longer than originally anticipated.
However, the Government still encourages people with the skills and qualifications needed in New Zealand to come here, and will continue to process residence applications from those who have a job offer in New Zealand.
The 2021 Resident Visa is a new visa category that has been introduced to make it easier for people with the skills and qualifications needed in New Zealand to get residence.
Due to the simplified application and assessment process, 2021 Resident Visa applications will be processed quicker than skilled residence (Skilled Migrant, or Residence from Work category) applications. We expect most to be processed within 18 months.
The vast majority of Skilled Residence staff are working on 2021 Resident Visa applications, but there is still a small team processing skilled residence (SMC and Residence from Work) applications. These applications will continue to be given priority status.
Since 2020 resulted in border restrictions due to COVID-19, processing of offshore visa applications was placed on hold. However, immigration NZ still kept track of the number of skilled residence applications that were in the offshore and onshore general queue separately.
The skilled residence general queue now includes onshore and offshore applications, following the resumption of application processing for applicants outside of New Zealand.
As of September 12, 2022, the oldest application in the skilled residence general queue was received on August 16, 2022.
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We provide prompt updates through our blog. If you have any questions about the skilled migrant category or residence from work, please contact us. Our team of experienced immigration consultants will be happy to help you with your specific case.