Exodus of Kiwis to Australia hits a record 53,462 or 146 a day in the year to end of April; Short term Euro-visitor numbers slump

Exodus of Kiwis to Australia hits a record 53,462 or 146 a day in the year to end of April; Short term Euro-visitor numbers slump

By Paul McBeth

The number of New Zealanders packing their bags and heading to Australia accelerated in April, with a new record number of annual departures at 53,462.

Some 4,500 people left New Zealand for Australia in April for a net loss of 3,500 in the month, according to Statistics New Zealand. That took the annual net loss to 39,800, almost 13,000 more than the same annual exodus a year earlier.

"Annual outflows to Australia have been at record levels since the November 2011 year," Statistics NZ said.

The overall loss of migrants in April was 2,300 for an annual outflow of 4,000. That annual figure was made up of 83,800 new migrants arriving, and 87,800 leaving.

People have been quitting New Zealand for Australia for years as they seek higher wages and a better standard of living across the Tasman. That diaspora has been captured in a controversial NZ On Air-funded reality TV programme, The GC, which follows a group of young Maori who emigrated to Queensland's Gold Coast, and has been likened to popular MTV programme 'Jersey Shore'.

The number of short-term visitor arrivals fell 1.1 percent to 196,700 in April, led by a 23 percent slump in European tourists, especially Germans, Irish, and Spaniards. Asian visitor numbers climbed 35 percent in April from a year earlier to 11,600, with a rebound in the number of Japanese tourists after last year's earthquake and tsunami.

On an annual basis, short-term visitor numbers rose 3.9 percent to 2.6 million.

Foreign tourist spending was flat in the year ended March 31 at $5.64 billion, according to government figures. That was put down to a rise in the number of cheap Australian visitors and falling numbers of big-spending Japanese and Korean tourists.

'Disappointing'

ASB Economist Daniel Smith said the net migration outflow was the largest in seasonally adjusted terms since February 2001.

"That was a little disappointing after a positive inflow of 230 was recorded over March and means that the annual loss ticks upwards to 4,006, slightly lower than the annual loss of 4,068 recorded back in February," Smith said.

He said the relatively large net outflow of migrants over April was driven by a 14.7% fall in arrivals, while the number of people departing remaining very stable.

Smith said the number of permanent and long-term departures to Australia had stabilised in recent months.

"The current level is historically a high one, and this is the primary driver of the record total net outflow of migrants. The relative state of the labour markets on either side of the Tasman is, of course, a vital factor in the number of NZ’ers making the move. We expect that a gradual recovery in employment at home, matched with an Australian labour market that has been treading water for the past year, will reduce the rate of outflow over the next year or so," Smith said.

"Looking past the monthly volatility, we expect the strong outflow to continue for the time being, but to slow as the domestic recovery continues, the Australian labour market continues to flatline and other regions of the World continue to struggle economically," he said.

"Weak migration levels are unlikely to exert upwards pressure on housing or other prices."

(Updates with ASB economists' comments)

(BusinessDesk)

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current comment policy is here.

64 Comments

Comment Filter

Highlight new comments in the last hr(s).

Call to John, the young, the best, the education, the future are leaving New Zealand, what are you doing about this?
 

Yes John - watch The GC - the most educated and brightest are moving to the Gold Coast. 

hehehe Reminds me of a friend, when observing the luminosity of a bride on her wedding day, suggesting she was glowing like a 25 watt bulb... (barely throwing any glow off at all... In the days of incandescent bulbs when you put a 50 watt bulb in if you just wanted a dim light...)
 
So.... what is the average wattage of the pollies I wonder?

John has tried to keep them here by suggesting we do more to exploit minerals/oil. But too much opposition has stifled this.

Yeah – another industry would also help to keep NZyoungsters here – drilling holes into cheeses - Jesus !

Fracking is the future , Walter ..... get drilling , horizontally !..  Damn fine idea ...... excellent suggestion .
 
..... amazing how quickly the energy industry will turn on its head , as stupid solar & windfarms give way to clean green natural gas ....
 
NZ youngsters would do well to study mining and drilling . Very well indeed .

Slap each one, man woman and child with a $5000 departure tax as a cost recovery measure.
 
And before you all start moaning and groaning with an outraged chorus of typical hand ringing Kiwi nonsense, two US Senators are about to introduce a bill into the US Senate which would do a very similar thing, only much worse. Theirs will be an asset departure tax. And why not? It's common sense that you should pay what you owe to your country if you chose to leave it.
Think of all the votes and welfare you could buy if you introduced that one, Labour! 

True, but it would be nice if Kiwis stayed in their country because they actually wanted to.
 
A departure tax might help reduce the number of people actually leaving, but addressing the reasons why they want to leave in the first place would probably make more sense (and maybe be more beneficial too).

Depends. What category of "kiwi" are they. Record kiwi exodus could mean anything. Could also mean the gutting of Christchurch.

According to some, the category leaving is the "best and the brightest". I guess that makes me pretty dumb.
 
But anyway, maybe it's time to ask what it is that makes Australia so attractive. If it's mostly the warmer weather, well there isn't a heck of a lot that we can do about it. As for other factors however, NZ may have the power to do something about. Maybe the govt should set up a working group to brainstorm on the matter (just kidding).

.... it helps to have a love of wildlife , and expatriate Kiwis must do , 'cos Aussie has it all :-
 
Saltwater crocs / Redbacks / Mosquitos / Funnel Webs / Army Ants / Termites / Brown Snakes / Bush Ticks / Blue Ring Octopus / ..... if it stings , snarls , poisons or rips your face off ...... it's here  !
 
Come on over ..... we're waiting for you ( " fresh meat ! " )

lol. Nah, we're staying put. The kids love it here and Oxford is bliss as far as we are concerned :) Friendly wee town with beautiful mountain views and walking tracks, close enough to both the skifields and the surf: what more could we ask for...

NZ a great place when your kids are young.  Unfortunately as they hit post-tertiary age they often need to leave to keep progressing.  
In our case:  Kid1 went to Sydney at 18 after a 1 year carpentry course & picked up an apprenticeship after a few days of hopping off the plane. Now has a company vehicle, iphone, good wages for an apprentice.
Kid2 is leaving shortly for Aussie after graduating with a degree, & no career-level job in NZ after 6 months of completing. 
I'd be following them myself, .... if only my better half could handle flies, Ozzies, & harsh accents....

Is this the legislation you are referring to David;
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Expatriation_tax
 
 

Yes it's along those lines, although what I'm referring to is a Bill at this stage, rather than a piece of legislation. Nevertheless it establishes an important principle. As a citizen you owe your country something. And if you renounce your citizenship there is an expectation that you owe something back, that there are no free rides. And I'm pleased to see the Americans are standing up for that principal in terms of their own country.  
That New Zealand would do the same..........

You have stepped so far to the right that you have gone East.

Yet if you worked there/here you have paid tax on your assets as you earned them...so it was PAYE....so in effect its a double tax. Indeed I think such double taxation applies if you are a US citizen working in another country though again there is an earning threshold.  Might also apply to ex-greencard holders who return home,  kind of nasty.
In effect of course its a CGT but limited.
regards
 
 
 
 
 
 

Thing is some of them will just borrow the $5k and still go.

...... and having paid the $ 5000 , they're less likely to want to return ......
 
Lest we forget , Many Kiwis do fly " home " eventually

Yes, I think many do, but most don't. They get settled into their new homes and lives, the kids grow up, develop relationships, have kids etc. Australia, the UK, the US becomes home so there is no real need to come back, apart from a lingering dash of nostalgia and sentiment.

Why not go the whole hog.  Make leaving the country illegal.  Razor wire fences arround the airports and detain the families of overseas bound travelers pending their return to NZ.  Such measures are the hall mark of other failed ecconomies and societies. 
These departures are the consequence of a total failure of succesive governments to address the deep underlying flaws in our ecconomy and total failure of the present government to do anything other than fill the pockets of the top few percent and flogg off the family silver to them.  (which of course they can afford with their tax savings)
If we remain on the current track the problem will get a whole lot worse not just because of the obvious ecconomic and social differences, but also because friends and familly in Australia  will draw more Kiwis away permanently.
This feels very like a small provincial town or city losing it's population to Auckland.  At a certain point it becomes unstopable.

Why not go the whole hog.  Make leaving the country illegal.
 
A great recruitment idea for Kunst's army. I am for it. 

The same has happened and is still happening in Ireland. We'll be no better off .

Emigration TAX is not uncommon. A South Afrcan chap told me  they are subject to a 10% levy on any money they remit on emigrating PLUS a 10% CAPITAL GAIN TAX on any assets they leave behind . I did not believe this , so I GOOGLED it and its  true .

Winter in Canberra or Melbourne ain't too warm.

Even summer in Melbourne can be rather chilly, as I found out when I just about froze watching the Boxing Day test in the Ashes series a couple of years ago...

Time must be close to this becoming an Australin political issue... to many newbies, not enough job for the locals etc etc.  Then the stampede to get across before the gates come down will begin...

......reality and politics don't go together Hugh...as you should know.  Once unemployment really sets in and locals can't get a job theres gonna be easy votes on hand for a polly who blames the migrants.  As Winston knows.

And you just know that some of their kids will end up playing for the Wallabies...

....... and learning " lawn bowls " ...... what's the other name for that game ?  .. help me out here , Gareth ...
 
Oh yeah , that's right , .... Australians call it   " Cricket ! "

Suprising they are moving to Queensland. No jobs there.
 
Amazing the reaction to a single headline. Before any meaningful conclusions can be drawn there needs to be more information provided. It could be the people departing are overstayers, they could be temporary visitors reaching the end of their working visas, they could be people who couldn't get into australia on the first go round so they come to NZ to get residency followed by a new zealand passport, and then zoom, off they go. What is required is a full break-down of the departees, by nationality, age group, citizenship, residency status, place of departure (ie are they chch's)

As Bernard asked in the Top-Ten hit-parade .. is nz being taken for patsy and patsies ...

A guy I know (not an aquaintance) (he's second generation greek) (very personable, mr smiles, gift of the gab, slick) has been unemployed for 8 years, is under pressure to get off welfare, so this month he is moving from Melbourne to Cairns, the unemployment capital of australia.

The shine is coming of Australia - don't expect to walk off the plane & straight into a job.  Sydney job market in Finance is very sluggish at present - one agent advised me that "she had not seen it this quiet since the start of the GFC".
Anyone making the move needs to be armed with at least 3 months (preferably 6 months) of disposable income to see them through till they find work.  Reports in SMH recently suggest that 2/3rds of all new jobs created in Australia recently have been in WA for the mining boom.  East Coast cities are sluggish at present.
However - saying that - as we are all sliding back into recession, I know where I'd rather be.  Much more chance of work in Australia and better opportunities. 
 
 

....... somewhere around 40 % of the workforce are in casual employment , not permanent jobs .....
 
And many employers hire you on an  " on call " basis ... meaning you have to  sit home , and hope the 'phone rings ..... and if you're out & about , doing stuff , or caring for your family ..... you gotta drop that , and get to work ASAP .....
 
....... rentals in the cities are expensive . It's much cheaper in the regional centres , but there're fewer job opportunites , and the locals don't give jobs to " blow ins " ....
 

If you are a deadbeat  in nz chances are you will be one in aussie.
i don't mind them going but who and what are we replcing them with

sssshhhhhhh .. you are not supposed to ask that question ... all Bill Liu's family and relatives

"A guy I know (not an aquaintance) (he's second generation greek) (very personable, mr smiles, gift of the gab, slick) has been unemployed for 8 years, is under pressure to get off welfare, so this month he is moving to Cairns the unemployment capital of australia."
We could do with getting rid of a few more like him to Oz.  8 years unemployed, what were WINZ staff doing allowing him to claim UB for so long?
 

Moving from Melbourne to Cairns .. Centrelink (WINZ) is up to it's eyeballs with illegal boat people and welfare and rent assistance and cigarettes and mobile phones and massive phone bills (phoning back home to let the relatives know about the lurk). Another boatload arrived off Christmas Island this morning carrying 190 illegal passengers.

they can go for all I care. I have just got back from Sydney and the first two people I spoke to were beggars.

Lucky you , ... you met both Julia Gillard & Tony Abbott  ! ......
 
....... or was that in NZ ?

just clarifying - the beggars were in Sydney

Obviously don’t spend much time in central Auckland Kane? I get asked daily for spare change on my walk to/from work…

Why wouldn't people leave... House prices are going up when the economy is flat/falling...  where as, House prices are still falling across the ditch... I know two other families that are going, due to this ...

Thats the reason why I'm off back overseas with my gf. We have only been back for a year from the UK, and after looking at buying a house etc and 'settling down' we decided that prices are insane for terrible quality. Without that 'settling' commitment, we can just go, so are.If house prices were sane, we would probably have brought a house and stayed. Alot of my friends think the same way. They think, 'its too expensive' so delay coming back. The longer they delay, the less likely they are to come back.

Reasons why I left
 
- sick of paying top rate tax for years to support 12% or so of population on benefits.  Also sick of funding middle class welfare (Working for Families) and interest free student loans.  I feel I've personally received no benefits myself from it - in fact have never once claimed any kind of benefit in NZ.  At least in Australia you get discounted medical care via MediCare and doctors visits at some surgeries free. 
 
- job market dead in Auckland.  I could get work but I will most likely not be stretched or challenged as companies are too small.  Fed up with "she'll be right" attitudes and a lot of companies with very bad management.  Will just go round in circles for 20 years if I stay.  Can earn almost double in Australia and will accrue a decent amount of super to retire on.
 
"Kiwi lifestyle" is becoming a myth - everything so expensive now all you can do is keep working to pay your day to day bills (rates, insurance, petrol, electricity and the like). Rent & housing may be more expensive in the big cities in Australia but some items I have been paying HALF the NZ price for (eg: Apple gear, non-alcoholic wine, books) and groceries, clothing etc generally cheaper

- fed up of National Govt : totally useless.  Liars and spin merchants. Running NZ into the ground. Sell off of utility companies is the worst idea ever.
 
- When the big Wellington earthquake hits, the country will be bankrupt. Actually the way Key is carrying on it could be there in the next 5-10 years anwyay.
With no immediate family of my own in NZ, why would I stay ???

Thank you BackToAus. You have just confirmed that Mr. Muldoon's thoughts all those years ago still ring true today.
On another note - have you considered England? I'm told that whingers are more than welcome there...

Whinger or not... these are the reasons Gen X and Y are leaving and not coming back .
Plus some cite the better weather - although I think that is debatable !!

Any genX and genY who leave because they think they aren't getting a fair shake in nz will get the cobwebs shaken off quick-smart, and if they think they are going to get a fair-shake in australia they are going to be quickly dis-illusioned. There are a lot of people in australia who come from a migrant or refugee background who are battle-hardened in the ways of survival. They will learn australia is a harsh and unforgiving environment. They will arrive back in new zealand a lot better for the experience. And a lot of them will return. Smarter and wiser and more willing.

Mexican John - Maybee.  To me, he looks like Silvio Berlusconi without the dubious social life

- you forgot to add the pathetic tall popy syndrome here.
I agree with all your points and if I was 10 years younger I would join you.

key can finally admit he is a total failure now then.

are you kidding???? he still thinks he leading the best govt ever!!!

I'll give him and the National party one thing, the best at making excuses I can ever remember, nothing is their fault.

Acorrding to Key you can cut your tax take by 2 billion and that somehow has nothing to do with the fact that you don't have enough money for anything, 

here's a simple quick test to see if Australia is for you..
Go outside and yell "GOOD EYE MIGHT"
If you sounded like Australian then you'll be fine.. otherwise don't bother...
 

You'll have more success if you speak out your nose instead of your mouth.

What an absolute joke the Key govt is.
Every single thing they pride themselves on is going from bad to worse. Unemployment, GDP growth, and now emigration (so much for John "Turn the exodus around" Key)
Mind you, there is a plus for the govt in having continued record high levels of emigration - it will help limit the unemployment damage

Hugh I was being sarcastic, really, although I have no doubt that  the job opportunities to be found over here for kiwis have helped keep unemployment in NZ lower than it would have been otherwise
the slowdown here is one reason why I think NZ unemployment will grow to the 7% I predicted at the start of the year

Exactly right Matt, what makes me sick is the way this bunch of guys in the National party, with Key being the worst offender won't take responsibility for anything.

They blame it on everything else, woe is me, poor John Key just can't get a break.
Life if about taking responsibility, and if they hadn't blown over 2 billion a year in tax cuts, while still not cutting the middle class welfare they needed to, then what else did they expect to happen?

But to be the government regularily setting records for our biggest deficits ever, and growing government debt faster than any previous NZ government.

They are continually surprising me at how bad a government they are.

Wealth creators, Homo qui reddit paulo tributum.
 

Nicely put....
regards

Well you make some valid points, but better put on the seatbelt before you look at Aussies "middle class welfare".

NZ is very expensive. Today in HK I went to a Picasso exhibition covering his entire oeuvre, 55 works, including his first ever at age 14. Entry cost $3.39 NZ.
Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) is the most widely recognised and influential artist of the 20th century. The Hong Kong Heritage Museum is thrilled to present the exhibition “PICASSO – Masterpieces from the Musée National Picasso, Paris”. Showcasing 55 of the artist’s original works from the permanent collection of the museum, this will be by far the most comprehensive exhibition of Picasso’s works ever held in Hong Kong.

Capturing every phase of Picasso’s prolific career, the retrospective covers his Blue, Rose, Cubist and Neoclassical periods as well as showing some of his primitive and Expressionist works. It also includes some 50 documentary photographs and 4 films which help to present a detailed picture of the artist’s life. Not only does the wealth of materials enrich our understanding of Picasso and his oeuvre, but it also marks out the exhibition as a truly unmissable event.

 

He did this when he was 14

http://www.ipernity.com/doc/mancie-passion/12121309

 

And must have done this one when he was on drugs

http://www.pablo-ruiz-picasso.net/work-1960.php

 

The point being can NZ compete??

Graduating at the end of this year with a Bcom in finance and economics and I’m gone. Why? Because you’d be mad not to, might as well go make a living somewhere else then come back after nz goes bankrupt and buy up on the cheap. See you all then.

If you think it's possible for a nation with its own sovereign, non convertible fiat currency and a floating exchange rate to go bankrupt, then you clearly haven't learnt anything about economics in your time at school.
 
 

MMT?  total rubbish...
regards