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Residence in New Zealand - NEW POLICY

Would you like to receive information about the recent CHANGES to Immigration Policy and advice as to how those changes might affect you?

If so, CAUDWELLS can assist you.

Migrants, entrepreneurs, investors and students will find New Zealand a more attractive destination following the changes to immigration policy announced in October 1998. The aim of the changes is to reward migrants for the right things such as skills and innovation, not just the amount of money migrants have. The changes remove unnecessary barriers that existed before the changes.

CAUDWELLS can give you information about all of the changes but here are two examples:

  • The abolition of the $20,000.00 English Language Bond.

For all applications made under the General Skills Category, after 20 November 1998, this bond will be replaced by the establishment of a pre-purchase English language training package.

  • A more realistic approach to qualifications.

This is another important feature of the new policy under the General Skills Category. From 30 November Applicants under this category, will receive points for all work experience, whether relevant to the qualification or not.

There have also been changes to Policy for people wanting to spend time and energy in New Zealand developing a business. The NEW Investor Category (replacing the previous Business Investor Category) has a simpler points table, rewarding Applicants in three categories only - age, business experience and investment funds. A NEW Entrepreneur Category and a NEW Long-Term Business Visa are also part of the new policy package. (These start 29 March 1999).


We can:

  • Provide the services of a Japanese Speaking Lawyer
  • Give you a completely professional and ethical service,
  • Provide you with an honest straightforward assessment, of your eligibility to apply under all categories, using the latest Policy
  • Prepare your application, arrange for translations of documents and liase with New Zealand Immigration Service,
  • Assist you with your successful settlement in New Zealand - purchasing a house, giving advice on such matters as taxation, estate planning and continuing legal advice.

Talk to us about IMMIGRATION and RESIDENCE in New Zealand.


In Dunedin:

Clair Elder

In Christchurch:

Roger Sandford

Catherine O'Connell

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Overseas Investment in New Zealand

Investment in New Zealand by overseas people or corporations is permitted. The New Zealand government has welcomed and encouraged investment for many years. A government agency is responsible for vetting and administering applications for overseas investment to ensure that undesirable investments are discouraged.

The government agency responsible for the processing of applications by overseas people is called the Overseas Investment Commission. The government regulations provide that an overseas person must seek and obtain the consent of this Commission to them acquiring or taking control of 25% or more of significant assets in New Zealand. The significant assets relate are:

  1. Businesses or property worth more than $10 million;
  2. Land over 5 hectares or worth more than $10 million; and
  3. Certain sections of land over 0.4 hectares (eg on islands; containing or next to reserves, historical heritage areas, the foreshore or lakes).

The government regulations define who is an overseas person. An overseas person includes an individual who is not a New Zealand citizen and who is not ordinarily resident in New Zealand. An overseas person is also deemed to include any company or body corporate that is incorporated overseas and any New Zealand company with 25% or more of its specified securities or voting power held by overseas persons.

In respect of farm land the Commission will take into account the purchasers residency, whether the purchase will make a material contribution to the economy, and also whether the property has been offered on the open market.

For the year ending 31 December 1997 the Overseas Investment Commission gave approvals for new investment into New Zealand of $2.1 billion, and in relation to land sales, 49,242 hectares.

In 1997 281 land sale consents were granted.

There were 198 new investment approvals granted in 1997.

During 1997 only six applications were refused consent on the basis that they were not considered to be of national interest. These applications involved a total area of only 168 hectares.

The highest value for approvals in 1997 was from Australia ($1.7 billion), the United States ($1 billion), and Hong Kong ($0.6 billion).

In relation to land sales approved, the United States, at 36,330 hectares, had the largest area approved followed by China (6,417 hectares) and Japan (3,672 hectares).

CAUDWELLS has experience in dealing with applications for overseas investments and in obtaining the consent of the Overseas Investment Commission and the Minister of Lands if necessary.

CAUDWELLS can advise any potential purchasers of the steps that must be taken and the legal structures necessary to ensure that the overseas investment has the best chance of success.

CAUDWELLS acts for residents of Japan and Japanese living in New Zealand and has a lawyer who can speak fluent Japanese.


Peter Richardson

Roger Sandford

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