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Immigration viewed from different angles

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 29/06/2017

Different viewpoints on the touchy subject of immigration is the aim of a symposium that will take place in Dunedin.

The event, to be held this weekend, has speakers including Greens co-leader Metiria Turei, political analyst Dr Bryce Edwards, Labour's immigration spokesman Iain Lees-Galloway and National List MP Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, among others.

Immigration is a key issue that New Zealanders care about in the leadup to the September general election, says symposium spokeswoman Alexis LewGor, the national president of the New Zealand Federation of Multicultural Councils.

Immigration issues are being linked to New Zealand's housing issues, economic prosperity, national security and our broader social development, she said.

"What is less appreciated is that it is not so much immigration that leads to these but more ignorance and misrepresentations about immigrant communities," Ms LewGor said.

Questions to be raised at the symposium include how New Zealand's immigration policies compare internationally, the costs and benefits from immigration, and the effects it has on housing.

Nearly one in four people living in New Zealand were born overseas, migrants are less likely to claim a benefit than native New Zealanders and 71 per cent of Kiwis feel that migrants make an important contribution to the country, she said.

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