Foreign Students Able To Work Part-time

  • John Delamare

International tertiary students will be able to work for up to 15 hours a week during term-time as part of a package of initiatives to make New Zealand a more attractive destination for international students.

The Minister of Immigration, Hon Tuariki Delamere, said that the decision to allow international students to work part-time during term-time will help to boost the already growing industry of international education. Currently, international students are only allowed to work during the Christmas vacation.

"The international education market is already worth about $350 million each year in foreign exchange. But there is already significant competition in this market from our nearest trading partners. If we are to grow this export earning industry, we need to remain competitive," Mr Delamere said.

The Minster of Education, Hon Wyatt Creech, said that recent research in Australia has shown that working part-time was an important factor for foreign students choosing where to study.

"If the New Zealand international education sector is to continue to grow, we need to be able to compete with countries like Australia where international students are able to work 20 hours a week during term-time," Mr Creech said.

"In terms of any impact on the labour market, all indications are that this will be small. There are only about 7,500 foreign students studying in New Zealand at present. We do want to be certain that the benefits to the economy will outweigh any costs, so we have asked Work and Income NZ to monitor any impact of foreign students on the labour market and report to Government on this," Mr Delamere said.

The change in policy will take effect on 30 November 1998.