Business migration hits $562m   6 May 2011

Over $560 million in potential investment capital is poised to flow into the New Zealand economy, and changes to the Government’s business migration scheme will increase investment further, says Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman.

Dr Coleman confirmed today the Government’s business migration scheme has attracted over half-a-billion dollars in potential investment. Changes have also been made to the policy to increase its appeal to investors.

‘’We launched this package 19 months ago and the take-up rate has been incredibly encouraging. It’s attracted $562 million in potential investment which shows the package is very appealing to business migrants,’’ Dr Coleman says.

‘’Since the scheme’s been operating, it’s attracted several times the amount of potential investment capital compared to the previous Government’s policy. We’re committed to policies that attract investment which helps to grow our economy.’’

To date $142.5 million has been transferred and invested in New Zealand under the Business Migrant Policy and $167.25 million has been approved for funds transfer. Applications from investors worth an additional $252.5 million are being processed.

Funds have been directed into various investment vehicles ranging from bonds, shares and securities to Auckland Airport, Fonterra and even a chicken farm.

‘’To ensure we’re getting the best return from this package, we reviewed the policy settings to ensure that the changes that come into effect from mid-2011 will provide more incentives for wealthy migrants to upgrade their investment,’’ Dr Coleman says.

‘’Not only are we attracting valuable capital, but we are attracting people with commercial nous, experience and global networks. Over time the aim is to see more migrant capital invested in New Zealand’s productive sector.’’

Dr Coleman says the Government’s scheme makes it easier for people to invest money in New Zealand without compromising the security and integrity of the immigration system.

Background information

The Government’s business migration scheme offers two investment categories:

Investor Plus – minimum investment of $10 million for at least three years

Investor – minimum investment of $1.5 million for at least four years.

Some of the key changes to the business migration scheme includes:

• Reducing the residence requirements for Investor Plus migrants during the three year investment period from 73 days to 44 days per annum.

• Investment opportunities will be expanded by allowing migrants to invest in entities established by parent organisations to raise funds. Migrants will also be allowed to invest in bank bonds and equities.

• More flexibility is being provided around the requirement for business experience. Instead of previously having to meet both conditions, business migrants only need to meet one of the following criteria - to have owned or managed a business with five full time employees or to have owned or managed a business with a minimum $1m in annual turnover.

• Migrants will be allowed to transfer funds through foreign exchange companies which recognises the emerging international trend in funds transfer.

• Residential property is to be included as an acceptable investment. Safeguards are required so that residential property investments create economic growth and increase the total housing stock available to New Zealanders.

For further information on business migration go to http://www.immigration.govt.nz


(New Zealand Government)

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