31 Mar 2014

Rebuild already striking skill shortages

12:16 pm on 31 March 2014

Business leaders in Christchurch say the city will need another 5000 immigrants in the next year to help with the rebuild.

The unemployment rate of working age men is 2 percent, the lowest recorded for the city.

But Christchurch's business sector is worried the high level of growth cannot be sustained without a massive injection of labour in the near future.

Chamber of Commerce chief executive Peter Townsend says the rebuild has only just begun and skill shortages are already cropping up as people move around industries chasing higher wages.

Mr Townsend says about 5000 immigrants are in Christchurch on work visas related specifically to the rebuild, and that number will need to double over the next 12 months.