Here’s some good news for those waiting to apply for residence under Phase 2 of One-Off resident Visa.

Immigration New Zealand has announced that  from 21 February 2022, those who have a Skilled Migrant Category (SMC) expression of interest (EOI) in the pool, submitted on or before 29 September 2021, can apply for the 2021 Resident Visa.  

“We have made good progress on processing the first phase of applications, and we can now open applications for groups of up to 1,500 people each day. This will be based on the application schedule below, and will start with the first group on 21 February. Those eligible will be able to apply when they receive an email from us. These will be ordered by EOI submission date.” read a statement from INZ.


Application schedule 2022

Emails will be staggered throughout the day.  

From Monday 21 February  
EOI submission date: Before or on 30 April 2020   

From Tuesday 22 February  
EOI submission date: 1 May 2020 – 30 June 2020 inclusive  

From Wednesday 23 February  
EOI submission date: 1 July 2020 – 31 August 2020 inclusive  

From Thursday 24 February  
EOI submission date: 1 September 2020 – 30 November 2020 inclusive  

From Friday 25 February  
EOI submission date: 1 December 2020 – 28 February 2021 inclusive  

From Saturday 26 February  
EOI submission date: 1 March 2021 – 31 March 2021 inclusive  

From Sunday 27 February  
EOI submission date: 1 April 2021 – 31 May 2021 inclusive  

From Monday 28 February  
EOI submission date: 1 June 2021 – 31 July 2021 inclusive  

From Tuesday 1 March  
EOI submission date: 1 August 2021 – 29 September 2021 inclusive   

Indian Weekender spoke to immigration experts to know how they feel about the move.

Immigration lawyer Alastair McClymont of McClymont & Associates says, “It’s a sensible decision which makes perfect sense. Clearly INZ know that there will be a mass rush of applications on 1st March so with this announcement it will help to ease the burden a bit.”


Giving his comments on the announcement, Immigration advisor Jagjeet Singh Sidhu says, “This is a good initiative to priorities those who have made efforts and have met 160 points under the SMC category and have passed IELTS with 6.5 band. I appreciate INZ move to priorities those application.

“Though INZ is moving a lot of resources to process one off residence visa application, they must also process the work visa applications. Many other applicants who have applied for their work visas extension in Nov -Dec 2021 are still waiting for their work visas to be granted so they can apply for residency under Phase 1. It is very hard situation for them when they see their fellows getting residencies approved and they dont even have work visas approved.”

Immigration expert Saif Shaikh, too, feels that the announcement is a piece of welcome news for eligible applicants who will apply for 2021 Residence Visa sooner.He says, "We believe it will also prevent INZ’s system from crashing like we saw during Phase 1 where a large number of applicants were trying to submit applications simultaneously, resulting in INZ’s system failure. INZ has further grouped the EOI’s, where the first group is able to apply on the 21 February 2022 and the next group to follow on a daily basis throughout the week. This pragmatic approach reduces the daily limit of applications submitted to INZ. Further reducing the pressure on us as Advisers who are expected to submit a large number of applications at the same time. It’s an exciting 2 weeks ahead and we would like to wish all the applicants the very best."

Immigration lawyer Aaron Martin however has a different take on it, He says, “The move clearly demonstrates they are uncertain their IT systems can cope and are worried about undue pressure coming onto the new Enhanced Realme system causing an outage as we experienced in December. This could have been avoided if they allowed people to prepare applications in advance of the lodgement date of 1 March. Again it seems an example of poor planning on the part of MBIE/INZ management.”