South Island Contribution Visa – Q & A

10 June 2017

  1. SICV: 5-year requirement

    My essential work visa will be 5 years on Dec 2017, can I apply for South Island Contribution Visa (SICV) on Dec to meet the 5-year requirement?
    – No, you do not meet the five years requirement which is between 22 May 2012 and 22 May 2017 
  2.  Stage 1:  (22/May/2017 – 22/May/2018)

    Can I include my family in my application for SICV? NO
    Does my family need to meet the English requirement to apply for SICV? NO 

     3. Stage 2:  (After 2 years)

Can I include my family in my application for SICV? YES

Does my family need to meet the English requirement to apply for SICV? YES

South Island Contribution Visa – One off Opportunity

This is it! the long awaited immigration opportunity that should not be missed.  Find out why???

26 May 2017

What is the South Island Contribution Visa?

This is a new visa type announced by the government on 19 April 2017. It is a one-off opportunity for long-term, low-skilled temporary migrants in the South Island to apply for residence visa, who would have been unlikely to gain residence visa under the existing residence pathways.


This is to recognised low-skilled migrants working in the South Island who helped New Zealand meet genuine regional labour market needs.


This new policy will come into effect on 22 May 2017. From this date, applications will be accepted for 12 months only.

How many are expected to apply for this visa?

Around 1,600 principal applicants or approximately 4,000 including their partners and dependent children

Who qualifies under this policy?

To be eligible for this visa, applicants must:

  • currently hold an Essential Skills work visa

               Essential skill work visa(ESWV) – Visa based on a job offer to fill positions where no available New Zealanders are suitable to take  the job

  • have been working on an essential skills work visa for at least five years mainly in the South Island
  • full-time employment (least 30 hours per week)
  • have an employer that complies with relevant employment law
  • be aged 55 years or younger and
  • meet health and character requirements

What is the process?

  1. Apply for Work to Residence temporary visa
     – A 30-month work visa which provides a pathway to residence
    – Holders of this visa are eligible to apply for residence after 24 months

– The partner of the holder of this visa may qualify for a work visa under partnership
– Dependent children aged 19 or under may qualify for a student, visitor or work visa

  1. Apply for Residence from work

To be approved for residence you must:

– Have held a work to residence visa for at least 24 months
– Have stayed in the same industry and region for 24 months

– The partner and dependent children will be eligible for residence with the principal applicant

  1. Condition of resident visa

–   The resident visa comes with a condition that – workers stay in the same South Island region for another 2 years

Is English Language required to apply for residence from work?

No for principal applicants as English language ability was not specified on the list of requirements to be eligible for this visa.

How much does it cost?

You can find fees using the INZ Fees Finder.

Applications for citizens of the Philippines currently residing in New Zealand South Island

Work to residence: $ 413

Residence from Work: $ 1,550

Who are expected to apply for this visa?

Workers who do not qualify under the existing residence pathways that end up re-applying for a work visa every year.
Some of the occupations that may benefit from this visa:

  • Dairy farmers
  • Caregivers
  • Drivers
  • Shelf fillers
  • Cleaners
  • Porters
  • Other low skilled occupations

Visit Immigration New Zealand website for more information.

Join our Facebook Group – ASK Immigration Consultants


Best Regards,

Sheila Doctor Hernandez
Licensed Immigration Adviser
Licence 201700443