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IMPACT – MEDIUM
What is the change? Immigration New Zealand (INZ) has announced that visa processing delays are expected following the closure of its Beijing visa processing office.
What does the change mean? INZ is transferring incoming visa applications from its Beijing office to other offices and has relocated immigration officers who normally work on Essential Skills visas to assist in processing visitor and student visa applications. As a result, INZ expects that this will increase the overall visa processing times of Essential Skills Work Visa applications.
Background: The Beijing office, which processes roughly 10,000 applications weekly, closed temporarily on Jan. 24 amid coronavirus concerns. The closure resulted in a reduction of 130 immigration officers who process visas.
Analysis & Comments: Although INZ has assigned 50 immigration officers who normally work on Essential Skills visas to process visitor and student visas from the Beijing office, they are currently facing a two-week backlog of over 13,000 applications. Essential Skills visa applications are currently taking 10 days to be allocated to an officer for processing, but could take up to six weeks, depending on developments in the coming weeks. Employers must be prepared to be flexible with employee schedules and start dates for employees who are affected by travel restrictions and delays. Deloitte will alert clients to additional changes or restrictions as information becomes available.
Source: Deloitte. Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), its global network of member firms, and their related entities. DTTL (also referred to as “Deloitte Global”) and each of its member firms are legally separate and independent entities. DTTL does not provide services to clients. Please see www.deloitte.com/about to learn more. Deloitte Legal means the legal practices of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited member firms or their affiliates that provide legal services. For legal, regulatory and other reasons, not all member firms provide legal services. This communication contains general information only, and none of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, its member firms or their related entities (collectively, the “Deloitte network”) is, by means of this communication, rendering professional advice or services. Before making any decision or taking any action that may affect your finances or your business, you should consult a qualified professional adviser. No entity in the Deloitte network shall be responsible for any loss whatsoever sustained by any person who relies on this communication. © 2020. For information, contact Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.
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