“..The face of the exodus to Australia is changing as skilled trade workers in their 20s replace young, well-educated Kiwis flocking to Australia.
Ten years ago, New Zealand was hit by a brain drain; now young tradespeople are chasing jobs and larger pay packets in Australia in a migration dubbed the “trades drain”.
And academics have warned that if the loss of trained workers and qualified professionals – who are still leaving in their thousands – continues, the country’s economy will suffer.
In one year, more than 17,600 people aged between 20 and 29 moved to Australia.
Most were in the “technicians and trades workers” and “professionals” categories, according to figures prepared for the Herald by Statistics New Zealand.
A spokeswoman for the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union (EPMU), Louisa Jones, said New Zealand was in a job crisis.
“Earlier in the decade, we were talking about the brain drain and saying we don’t want our educated, skilled professionals going offshore.
“But now we’re seeing a different type of drain – the trades drain.
We’re seeing people who directly contribute to our economy in a physical way now leaving.
It’s a dangerous game.”
People have been leaving New Zealand in increasing numbers – especially in the 20-29 age group..”
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