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Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse welcomes a report showing the vast majority of employers who take on seasonal workers under the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) scheme are also employing more New Zealanders.

The eighth annual survey of RSE employers found that 79 per cent of the 92 respondents had employed more permanent New Zealand workers in addition to their RSE workers.

“The fact that more RSE employers are now taking on more Kiwis as well is great news and shows once again the huge benefits of the RSE scheme,” Mr Woodhouse says.

“Employers have been able to get the workers they need, when they need them, which has increased productivity and enabled them to expand their businesses.

“The survey also found that 96 per cent of RSE employers believe the benefits of participating in the scheme outweigh the costs, with most of them expecting further improvements to their business as a result of taking part in the scheme.

“The survey results demonstrate yet again that the RSE scheme is a shining example of best practice where everyone benefits – employers, RSE workers and their home communities and New Zealand workers.”

RSE Monitoring: 2016 Employers Survey Working Report is available at

Note to Editors:

The RSE policy allows the horticulture and viticulture industries to recruit overseas workers – mostly from the Pacific Islands – for seasonal work.

Under the scheme employers can bring in a total of up to 10,500 workers a year, provided there are no New Zealanders available to do the work. This is consistent with Government policy to ensure New Zealander’s are first in line for jobs.

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