NewZealand Essential Skills Shortage Lists


The Essential Skills in Demand Lists includes the Long Term Skills Shortage List (LTSSL); the Immediate Skills Shortage List (ISSL) and the Canterbury Skills Shortage List (CSSL).

The lists help potential migrants like you to determine which visa entry category is most applicable, based on your experience and skills relevant to particular industries and regions.

Qualifying for a job on any of those lists enables migrants and their employers to avoid having to prove that there are no New Zealanders available to take the role instead



The ISSL is used by Immigration New Zealand in relation to temporary work policy. This list determines those occupations for which there is a current shortage of skilled workers, and helps the Immigration Department to streamline your application for a temporary or short-term work visa.



In contrast, the LTSSL is used for both temporary work policy and residence policy. This list exists to identify occupations for which there is an absolute and ongoing shortage of skilled workers. Migrants entering New Zealand under LTSSL requirements may be eligible for residency under either the Work to Residence scheme or the Skilled Migrant Category.



The Canterbury Skills Shortage List is a temporary list designed to assist skilled workers who wish to relocate to Canterbury to help with the Christchurch rebuild effort. It identifies occupations for which there is an immediate and urgent demand within the Christchurch/Canterbury region, due to rebuilding associated with earthquake recovery activities.

What if my occupation isn’t listed?

The Essential Skills in Demand List is reviewed twice yearly by New Zealand Immigration, which can result in occupations being added or removed from the list, as well as changes to the qualifications or experience required for a particular occupation.

The lists are not the only options for skilled migrants to enter and work in New Zealand. If your occupation is not listed, you may want to apply for a temporary work visa.

In this case, the occupation does not have to appear on either the ISSL or the LTSSL. Instead, the employer is required to show that they have genuinely searched for suitably qualified and trained New Zealander workers, and await the results of a labour market test. Alternatively, an employer with Approval in Principle may be able to conditionally recruit employees from overseas, with approval required prior to via application.

Approval will depend on each applicant’s individual circumstances, and upon all appropriate conditions being met.

What next?

    • Take free online Opulentuz  Evaluation
    • Get help with your NZ visa
    • Search for jobs in New Zealand 
  • INDIA1800 – 103 – 1555
  • UK0044 – 7850267536
  • USA001 – 7326239712
  • IRELAND00353 – 831026569



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