This Kiwi Talk entry was taken from a thread on ExpatExposed a self help and support forum for migrants in New Zealand.
Occasionally New Zealanders join the discussion and their experiences validate those of the many immigrants of all nationalities that contribute to the site.
This New Zealander told of how NZ was essentially a failing communist country under a dictatorship until the IMF stepped in and forced change.
One solution to get the ailing economy out of the doldrums was to encourage relatively wealthy, cashed-up immigrants to leave Asia, playing on their fears about the hand back of Hong Kong to New Zealand’s advantage. Rather like the campaigns that were waged after the 9/11 tragedies and leading right up to the hard-sell of the present day, even though it is attracting immigrants that aren’t prepared for a “hillbilly lifestyle.”
Evidence of this can be seen in the recent Singapore campaign using draws such as “cheap cars and housing.” See Migrants’ Tales – A Singaporean says living in NZ different from visiting and a thread on the Straits Times website in which Singaporeans discuss the campaign.
Here’s what the Kiwi on Expatexposed had to say:
“During the seventies and early eighties New Zealand had become a communist state in all but name. Rob Muldoon was a dictator which would make economic policy on the fly with sudden announcements about tax or to limit our freedoms. Rob Muldoon had decided to “Think Big” and took a gamble on some very big projects which he thought would pay off dividends in the future, which of course they did not.
By the early 80’s New Zealand was on its knees, the dollar was worthless, we had defaulted on overseas loans 2 or 3 times. Old Rob would have known that it wouldn’t be very long before the IMF would be giving him a call and telling him that he could pick up his next budget from his fax machine. So he called a snap election in 1984 and Labour swept to power. Now New Zealand has a very small term for parliament of 3 years which really is too small. It could be why New Zealanders always end up with short term solutions. Anyway, Labour came to power without too many options because the IMF were breathing down their necks. They made sweeping changes, over night we had gone from totally left economics way over to the right. Roger Douglas said, give them too many moving targets and the opposition won’t know what to focus on.
It was while going through this adjustment period that the 1987 crash happened, now New Zealand being a macro economy went into recession very fast and didn’t really start to come out until 93-94. It was in the early 90’s some Politian’s came up with the idea of offering Asians Citizenship if they were prepared to bring in large amounts of capital and buy a home. Their main focus was on Hong Kong because if you remember the British were going to hand back Hong Kong to the Chinese in 1997 so the NZ government played on this fear to their advantage. I lived in Auckland at the time and property developers were building whole subdivisions in no time at all. Of course the people living in Howick were not too pleased, neither were folks in Pakaranga or Highland Park. Immigration has offered New Zealanders a life line over the past 20 years. New Zealand still produces the same old butter, milk, trees and kiwi fruit, which in value terms is not a lot of money. I can buy 4 kiwi fruit from Sainsbury’s for 30p. Whose making money out of that?
Anyway, what this board is about is the New Zealand government over selling and using spin to dupe unsuspecting immigrants that are clearly not suited for the Hillbilly life. Unfortunately getting to New Zealand costs a lot of money. If you live in the UK and you decided to give France a try you haven’t got much to lose. The New Zealand government was too focused on the cash instead of having a look at the whole process. Losing thousands of £s are not toe-nails!!!! Some of these people have taken the children out of good schools only to find that NZ schools are terrible.
I was born in New Zealand and lived there for 30 years before I made my escape from “Ground Hog Day” or “Deliverance”. I have now been away for 15 years and I have never regretted one single day since I shipped out. New Zealand is what it is, just another pacific coconut nation, so there is no need to big it up.”