New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has conducted a review of the Essential Skills in Demand lists. These lists set out occupations for which applicants may be granted certain work visas (e.g. Essential Skills and Long Term Skill Shortage List work visas) and which are exempt from the labour market test requirements. On 27 May 2019, a number of occupations will be added and others removed from the lists. In addition, the Immediate Skill Shortage List will be replaced with a Regional Skill Shortage List, identifying skill shortages across 15 regions (as opposed to the previous broader six-region model). This model will also be applied to the Construction and Infrastructure Skill Shortage List.
From 13 May 2019, holders of Essential Skills and Religious Worker visas, with children whose visas are dependent on theirs, must earn a minimum of NZD 43,322.76 per annum, which represents a NZD 378.56 increase from the previous minimum income.