READER REPORT:

Can you fix it?: Stop the brain drain

ROBERT CHOVEAUX
Last updated 16:30 08/10/2012
GOLD RUSH: Western Australia's mining boom has attracted many Kiwis.

GOLD RUSH: Western Australia's mining boom has attracted many Kiwis.

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I am a recent Otago University graduate and am currently living in Perth working as a graduate geotechnical engineer.

Why?

Because with the lack of jobs and low wages offered to young alumni in NZ it is near impossible - with the cost of living - to make headway with a student loan looming over your head.

Here in Australia my wife and I have a combined income of A$160,000 (NZ$198,000). With the current first home buyers' exclusions and other tax breaks we have, in one year, got finance for (and paid off) a car, paid for a holiday to China next year, and saved half a deposit for a house. All while still maintaining more than minimum student loan repayments which is in excess of $80,000 for the two of us.

I'm no accountant, and don't claim to be, but there has to be an incentive scheme or something to keep our alumni home. We spend millions of dollars a year on student loans and education only to have other countries reap the benefits of our work.

Something is awry here.

I believe strongly in keeping our learned home, I would be if I could.


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