21 November 2018

Immigration New Zealand update

Celia Coombes, INZ’s Sector Relationship Manager (Education), shares the latest developments on the Pathway Visa pilot extension, and notes that post-study work visa changes will shortly come into effect.

Pathway visa pilot extension

With a significant amount of change happening during the second half of this year, INZ has not been able to sufficiently advance the development of the pathway student visa policy.

As a result, the existing pathway student visa pilot will be extended to 30 April 2019. This extension will come into effect on 26 November 2018, along with a number of other scheduled immigration changes.

Celia says this means all current pilot participants will be able to continue offering pathway student visas, and pathway student visa applications will continue to be accepted up until 30 April 2019.

“We have taken on board the feedback we have received during the consultation with the education sector. We will continue to work on reviewing the pathway student visa into 2019 and we are extending the pilot to allow for this. The education peak sector bodies will be informed and involved throughout this process” says Celia.

As part of the extension, INZ will also make the following improvements on 26 November 2018:

  • A dedicated online pathway student visa application form, including the ability to enter up to three programmes of study and education providers
  • One eVisa approval letter that includes the details of each programme of study (including the start and end dates)
  • Enhanced guidelines on the INZ website for pathway student visa applicants
  • Enhanced guidelines and training for Immigration New Zealand staff processing pathway student visas.  

Please note: no new providers will be added in for this extension. Entry criteria for providers will be part of the work being done early next year.

Post-study work visa changes come into effect

In August 2018, the Government announced changes to the post-study work visa policy to ensure that post-study pathways for international students are fit for purpose. These changes come into effect on 26 November 2018.

Transitional provisions will be introduced to ensure students who were studying or had applied for a student visa as at 8 August 2018 will not be affected by the changes.

Visit the INZ website for further information, including an FAQ document about the changes.

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