What is the Immigration Green List?

A man wearing a construction hat looking upwards

Immigration New Zealand’s ‘Green List’ introduces new residency pathways for migrant workers in New Zealand. The Green List contains a focused list of highly sought-after occupations that are currently in shortage in New Zealand.


Although it is a smaller and more focused list than the previous Skills Shortage list that it replaces, the Green List brings with it two guaranteed pathways for residence: the Straight to Residence pathway (for tier 1 occupations) and the Work to Residence pathway (for tier 2 occupations).


The Straight to Residence pathway enables eligible migrants to apply for residency immediately, even from offshore, once they are employed, or have received an offer of employment, in one of the listed Tier 1 occupations and provided they (and any family if applicable) meet the general application requirements of age, English literacy, and health and character.


Tier 1 Straight to Residence occupations:

  • Construction Project Manager
  • Project builder
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Surveyor
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Civil Engineering Technician
  • Civil Engineer
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Electronics Engineer
  • Electrical Engineering Technician
  • Environmental Engineer
  • Geotechnical Engineer
  • Industrial Engineer
  • Materials Engineer
  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Production or Plant Engineer
  • Structural Engineer
  • Telecommunications Engineers
  • Telecommunications Network Engineers
  • General Engineers not otherwise specified
  • General Practitioner
  • Anaesthetist
  • Psychiatrist
  • Specialist Physicians not otherwise specified
  • Surgeons
  • Other Medical Practitioners
  • Ophthalmologist Diagnostic and Interventional Radiologist and Radiation
  • Resident Medical Officer
  • Medical Laboratory Scientist
  • Clinical psychologists and Psychologists
  • Physicist (medical)
  • Orthoptist
  • Veterinarian
  • Environmental Research Scientist
  • Food Technologist
  • ICT Managers
  • Software Engineer
  • ICT Security Specialist
  • Multimedia Specialist

The Work to Residency pathway allows eligible migrants to apply for residency once they are employed, or hold an offer of employment, in a listed Tier 2 occupation and meet the general application requirements and have worked for 24 months in New Zealand. Acceptable work can be counted from 29 September 2021 onward. Applications for the Work to Residence Pathway open in September 2023.


Tier 2 Work to Residence occupations:

  • Anaesthetic Technician
  • Medical Laboratory Technician
  • Medical Imaging Technologist
  • Medical Radiation Therapist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Sonographer
  • Podiatrist
  • Audiologist
  • All Registered Nurses (including Aged Care)
  • Midwife
  • Teachers (secondary with specialisations and registered ECE)
  • Automotive Electrician
  • Diesel Motor Mechanic (including Heavy Vehicle Inspector)
  • Electrician
  • Plumber
  • Dairy Farm Managers

How does this relate to other residence pathways?

Although these are the latest updates to the New Zealand residency pathways, the occupations listed are not the only way in for new residents. There is also a ‘Highly Paid’ residence category for work visa holders who are paid twice the median wage and have worked in New Zealand for 24 months.

You can find more information, and further eligibility details over on Immigration New Zealand’s website: https://bit.ly/Residence-Categories

The team at CCR are here to help you with your employment and immigration needs. If you would like one of our Licensed Immigration Advisers to manage your residency application, get in touch today! Email immigration@ccrecruitment.co.nz to get started.




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