Super Rich Migrants Hate New Zealand’s Cost of Living, Bad Weather and Slow Pace of Life


The Investor Visa scheme flat-lined, the NZ government is now exploring fresh ways to milk rich migrants

It seems that the rich-poor divide in New Zealand isn’t as great as we all think. Why? because the super rich have exactly the same gripes about the country that their less affluent fellow migrants have.

If you ever wondered why the investor schemes are dead in the water (the investor schemes have flat-lined, 26 people entered on Investor Plus last year and 155 on the Investor visa) our guess is that the super rich get better value for their bucks elsewhere in the world than little-old homely New Zealand.

In a NZ Herald report on fresh research from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment into ‘super rich migrants’ we learn

Of those who had moved here, 89 per cent said personal and lifestyle expectations had been met but only 62 per cent felt that of business and networking opportunities. Just 31 per cent agreed NZ “makes the most of investors’ talents and networks”.

Downsides of the move included extended family not being given residency and the difficulty partners and other family had adjusting to the shift.

A few complained of low investment returns, bad weather, the high cost of living and slow pace of life…

Factors which counted against investments in NZ businesses included the market’s small size, its “over-regulation” and distance from the rest of the world.

The research – based on interviews with 20 Investor Plus and Investor migrants – also found there was “considerable untapped potential contribution from investor migrants”, financial and intellectually.

read the full report here

But despite that the NZ government sees potential investors as market ready cash cows waiting to be milked, and it will be going full-out to attract more of them and their “considerable untapped potential”.

How does your NZ migrant experience compare to that of the super rich, do you find New Zealand expensive, is your considerable potential (financial and intellectual) going to waste? Does the scenery not do it for you either? Let us know in the comments section below.

You may also be interested in

Lifestyle used to lure investors but net full of holes (Aug 2010)

Lincoln Tan, the immigration affairs journalist at the NZ Herald, has again written an excellent series of feature articles for the paper. This time concentrating on a potential growth area for the New Zealand Immigration Service – the Business Investor.

In the first article he writes about a recent study to investigate the major draws for investor migrants.

Although the study’s results are  a reaffirmation of what was already known, i.e.  that the NZ lifestyle is more important than pragmatic business and tax issues to migrants, the report demonstrates how the marketing of  NZ can be manipulated to sidestep facts and rationality and appeal directly to emotion and ideals. It’s interesting to see how this naïve approach is failing because of bureaucratic shortcomings and a lack of joined-up thinking.

The study was commissioned by Immigration New Zealand and Investment New Zealand and was aimed at “finding messages to lure potential investor migrants.” Migrants were asked to chose the messages that appealed most strongly to them:… read on


Tales from Retardicon 6: The Business of Investor Visas. Part 1,

“…The focus will be on the numberless dangers of migrating to New Zealand under one of the Business of Investor visas. The New Zealand government is exceptionally adept at constructing propaganda to deceive prospective migrants. Please visit for an example. Therefore, I will try to refute some of the lies and distortions.

First, it is important to know that Immigration New Zealand is not interested in you except to help milk money in fees. Furthermore, many of the investor or entrepreneur visas do not lead to permanent residence automatically. They only allow you to migrate to New Zealand and then you can apply for residence if the business is successful and you meet other requirements such as not having any medical issues. The Kiwi con artists in the government love to change the goalposts after the fact to swindle more money out of migrants.

One poignant illustrating involves a man from the UK who relocated to Northland and invested NZ $750,000 in a local garage that grew to employ seven people. Despite investing everything he had, having kids who were New Zealand residents, etc, the NZ government denied his residence visa because the man had a heart condition that could cause potential problems in the future. The man had declared this when he originally applied for the Business Visa that would allow him and his money to enter New Zealand to invest and which was not an issue at the time. The man obtained documentation from a doctor showing he was fine and he even offered to obtain his own health insurance or pay for any future problems he might have to avoid becoming a drain on the public health care system. Despite this, the New Zealand government has said no. This case has carried on for several years and the man once had to go to Australia and wait for the New Zealand government to make a decision after his previous visa expired. They allowed him to come back temporarily. Despite the prominent media attention from Campbell Live, the man’s case is now before Immigration Minister Judith Collins, an absolute buffoon. No country should treat someone that has created jobs in one of New Zealand’s most impoverished regions.”

Part 2, and Part 3


Investor Plus visa – The Plight of Martyn Payne (May 2011)

On May 6 Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman announced that over $560 million in potential capital investment is poised to flow into the NZ economy and planned changes to the Government’s business migration scheme will increase investment further. source

The Government’s business migration scheme offers two investment categories: Investor Plus – minimum investment of $10 million for at least three years, and Investor – minimum investment of $1.5 million for at least four years…

Before you reach for the visa application form and cheque book you may like to read about a British investor who has just been made to leave after establishing a North Island business with a turnover of $2 million a year. Why should you? because although New Zealand likes the wealth he generates it doesn’t like the chance that his (resolved) health condition may place undue strain on the country’s health on





3 thoughts on “Super Rich Migrants Hate New Zealand’s Cost of Living, Bad Weather and Slow Pace of Life

  1. I think that one can enjoy the advantages of New Zealand (nice scenery, low population density, access to the coast) for much less in a number of other countries. The most difficult thing for me was just the general stifling environment and the stupidity of the people. In other countries, people identify problems and attempt to fix them. Similarly, private industry, whether software, pharmaceuticals, automotive, attempt to identify and develop solutions to problems. In contrast, Kiwis simply pretend the problem does not exist.

  2. It amazes me that anyone would enjoy living here, unless you were loaded and money was no object. Why anyone would want to invest in a country inhabited by complete twats is beyond me. There are much better, nicer, friendlier, genuine countries with beautiful scenery plus you get decent citizens as well and won’t be mugged off week in week out. Money aside, I still can’t fathom how anyone coming to NZ could tolerate such dead inside, backward, stupid people on a regular basis.

    It still peeves me that mates and family back home believe NZ is some Lord of The Rings paradise and I’m ‘lucky’ to be here. All the scenery in the god damn world is not worth what you go thorough here. The ‘Lifestyle’ is facade, and you are only getting the ‘scenery’ as collateral.

    I really wish I was famous so I could do a massive article on NZ and slag it off with all my might and be heard by a large audience.

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