Jobless migrants urge Govt to act on economic report
By Lincoln Tan
4:00 AM Friday Nov 13, 2009

Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman will be asked to look at a Labour Department report on immigration's impact on the economy to support a call for amnesty for migrant workers who have lost their jobs in the recession.

At a meeting tomorrow, the Migrant Action Trust will present a petition, signed by 2000, for Labour and Green Party MPs to take to Parliament after failing to convince Dr Coleman with a position paper in July.

"Dr Coleman's response has been very cold towards the plight of migrant workers, and it has been very disappointing," said trust spokesman Mel Libre.

"What he has to do is look at his own department's report, and see there is more benefit for these migrant workers to be allowed to remain in New Zealand than to kick them out."

Released last week, the Economic Impacts of Immigration report said immigration in general, and not just highly skilled immigrants, contributed significantly to the economy.

It valued the current levels of immigration at 20,000 annual net inflow to be worth $1.9 billion a year to GDP and $1000 per capita GDP, and said the New Zealand economy needed immigrants with varying skill levels to grow.

More here.