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National’s fondness for doing backroom deals will undermine our immigration system and are unfair to Kiwi workers, Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Darien Fenton says.
New papers released under the Official Information Act show the government gave film maker Sir Peter Jackson assurances that it would intervene and override immigration rules if he had trouble bringing workers in to New Zealand.
“Our immigration process is supposed to give transparency and protect jobs for Kiwis,” Darien Fenton said. “Cleary this was something the government was prepared to ignore.”
“It adds to a disturbing trend of giving immigration privileges to the better off and a willingness by this government to bend the rules when money is involved,” said Darien Fenton.
Labour’s Arts and Culture spokesperson, Charles Chauvel, said it was extremely poor form for the government to be doing backroom deals that impacted on Kiwi workers.
“Given the investment New Zealand is making in our film industry, we should be doing everything possible to train and employ home-grown talent. Immigration shortcuts provide few opportunities to do that,” Charles Chauvel said.