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Life In New Zealand: Settlement Experiences of Skilled Migrants - Results from the 2005 Survey

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Executive Summary

The Settlement Experiences Feedback Survey (SEFS) gains feedback from migrants about their settlement experiences and outcomes in New Zealand (12 months after residence approval).

These migrants were approved for residence through the Skilled and Business Streams from 1 January 2004 to 31 December 2004. Therefore, these migrants were surveyed from 1 January 2005 to 31 December 2005.

The SEFS survey captures a range of information relating to migrants’ initial settlement in New Zealand such as employment and income, housing, children’s schooling and satisfaction with New Zealand; their experiences interacting with Immigration New Zealand (INZ); and any areas they could have used additional settlement assistance.

This survey achieved a 42 percent response rate and was over-represented by migrants approved for residence onshore.

Key Findings





Further education and training

Satisfaction with the immigration service in New Zealand

Access to services

Living in New Zealand


Overall, the settlement outcomes for skilled migrants are very good. Migrants are not a homogenous group. The SEFS survey shows that settlement experiences and needs differ by principal and secondary applicants, as well as by region of origin. Most principal applicants were employed at the time of the survey – a key determinant for positive settlement. Despite a few areas of dissatisfaction, skilled migrants were predominantly pleased with life in New Zealand and planned to live in New Zealand for at least five years or more.

ESANA includes countries from the following regions: Europe, South Africa and North America

Other includes Pacific countries