New Zealand calls for South African construction help over record build

December 1st, 2017, Published in Articles: PositionIT

New Zealand is calling for expert help from South Africa to fill a construction skills and talent shortages in one of the largest infrastructure and housing projects in the Pacific nation’s history.

The country’s government is introducing a special “KiwiBuild” fast track visa system to facilitate the search for construction talent, spearheaded by an international recruitment campaign called LookSee Build NZ.

Acting on behalf of a range of participating employers, including public and private sector entities, the LookSee Build NZ campaign is targeting highly skilled professionals from the US, particularly seismic and structural engineers, to assist them in becoming New Zealand-ready before match-making candidates who are interested, qualified and available with the appropriate employer.

The campaign aims to attract some of the more than 56 000 construction staff, including 2200 high-end specialist positions, that New Zealand needs for the more than NZ$125-billion programme of infrastructure works over the next decade. It is seeking civil engineers, structural engineers, surveyors and draughts people, bid managers and supervisors, commercial directors and managers, planners, operations managers, traffic, road and tunnel engineers, design coordinators and managers, and power grid supervisors, among a wide range of specialist construction roles.

Prime Minister Jacinda Adern has also announced a new NZ$2-billion housing programme for the construction of 10 000 homes a year for 10 years, as well as a programme of infrastructure works in addition to the existing pipeline.

To entice South Africans to migrate, the campaign is offering a range of quintessential “Kiwi experiences,” such as fishing, surfing and canoeing safaris, cultural events and the chance to see stunning sites of natural beauty. Those who get a job as a result of LookSee Build NZ will also airfares to New Zealand will be repaid.