Wellington’s quality of life attracts migrants
7 December 2010
Wellington’s quality of life plays a big part in skilled migrants’ decisions to choose to come and live in Wellington and contribute to its economic prosperity, according to a new Department of Labour study.
The migrants in the study who came to Wellington under the Skilled Migrant Category said they had deliberately chosen Wellington above other cities in New Zealand because of:
- Wellington’s physical beauty and geographical compactness
- Wellington’s unique labour market
- Wellington’s unique educational institutions
- Family connections.
The research is based on in-depth interviews with a small group of migrants who had earlier taken part in the Longitudinal Immigration Survey: New Zealand (LisNZ), a survey examining the experiences and settlement outcomes of New Zealand migrants during their first 3 years of permanent residence.
The 22 migrants interviewed for the study, Why Wellington? were selected from people living close to the Wellington central business district and included people from the United Kingdom, South Africa, Japan, Taiwan, China, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vanuatu and Fiji.
The study participants were highly skilled people – all but four were professionals or managers.
Participants who chose to make Wellington their home found the city socially diverse and friendly.
“The lifestyle here is very ideal, you know I can have a reasonably good job and also urban life (but at the same time) so close to the nature things … especially in Wellington, 10 minutes to everything. Ten minutes to beach, 10 minutes to the forest, to the bush, yeah and 10 minutes to downtown,” one woman said.
The small exploratory study offers indicative findings of what attracts migrants to live in certain areas. The study will be followed up with further studies with migrants in other centres to explore similarities and differences in the motivations that underpin the national patterns of settling and further migration decisions, the Head of Immigration, Nigel Bickle says.
“These findings help us learn more about how we can attract and retain the people we need for our economy to grow.
“Immigration plays a vital role in securing New Zealand’s prosperity – it supplies critical skills for our workforce, visitors for our valuable tourism industry and overseas students for our education industry, which are all important for the Wellington economy and its continued growth,” he says.
Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says the study “helps to confirm what we all know about our city. Wellington is a compact, cosmopolitan city in a beautiful environment.
“It also confirms the importance of actively promoting the city internationally to prospective migrants and supporting their settlement here through the Wellington Regional Settlement Strategy, a central government/local government initiative,” she says.
For Why Wellington? and other Department of Labour IMSED Research go to: www.immigration.govt.nz/research