Construction companies in Western Bay of Plenty, particularly in Tauranga, were looking to hire foreign skilled workers as not enough talent was available there.
NZ Herald quotes Johnny Calley, Tauranga Master Builders president, as saying that their industry needs more skilled workforce right now.
According to Mr Calley, the market for the skilled workforce in their area was growing disproportionately, implying that some of Bay’s major building companies were looking to foreign lands to plug the deficit.
He said most of the new houses in the Western Bay of Plenty were being built mostly for permanent residents.
Nigel Tutt, the chief executive of Priority One, an economic development agency, said they received feedback from local businesses saying that they were unable to find good workers locally.
He said that the working population of the Bay was not adequate to meet rising job demand of about four percent last year.
Tutt added as the economy was healthy; there were not enough job seekers for the number of jobs that had been created newly.
A survey conducted in early 2017 by Priority One stated that 40 percent of Western Bay businesses were recruiting skilled foreign workers.
About 335 respondents felt that it had become tough to attract staff with the skills required, which is impeding growth there.
Tutt said businesses were attracting talent from wherever they could.
Paul James, Certified Builders’ Tauranga president, said the shortage of skilled workers in all sectors gave rise to an increase of apprenticeships in the last one year. But still, he did not see many foreign tradesmen arriving in Tauranga, as big cities were attracting them more.
On the other hand, Ian Chitty, Tauranga manpower agent, said that they were witnessing people of many countries thronging to Tauranga.
He said that one out of every five job seekers were immigrants. Chitty added that particularly attracting South Africans owing to its seaside location, prosperity and climate.
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