How many immigrants should we accept?

How many immigrants should we accept?

Answer

This is a question around which we would like to see more respectful discussion as a nation - we suggest the use of citizens' assemblies to get a good grasp of New Zealanders' feelings on the matter.

TOP proposes that an important criteria should be whether immigration can increase the per capita income of Kiwis - not just the total GDP. So outside of humanitarian quota, that should be the first question asked when setting quotas by category. By being smarter with our selection of who we accept, we can increase the benefit to New Zealand without changing the number of immigrants. 

There’s evidence that the path to Permanent Residency is too easy, that we’re not valuing it highly enough. Migrants arrive, get permanent residency after 2 years of residency and then leave with that as a lifeline. So they leave for as long as they like, knowing they can always return. Such behaviour is not hugely beneficial to New Zealand.

A new place in Aotearoa New Zealand should only be created for someone who is really going to contribute so we need to develop criteria that ensures this – including requiring a longer time to be served before permanent residence is provided.