19 Oct 2016

Cooks seeks NZ labourers for building boom

4:37 pm on 19 October 2016

The Cook Islands is trying to entice workers from New Zealand to fill a major labour shortage.

The government has put in place a special permit that will allow New Zealanders to work for up to six months at a time, with the possibility of an extension to 12 months.

The Minister of Internal Affairs Albert Nicholas said the country had a number of major infrastructure projects due to start and it needs more labourers on these projects.

He said an estimated 300 labourers are needed and the companies involved would be aware that there are strong demand within New Zealand for those same workers.

"If they want to go the extra mile and to actually make the effort to draw the services here then the industry has to look at a very good package to draw that, and I suppose if they didn't put a good package together they won't be able to draw the services they require," he said.