December's migration gain was bigger than December 2017 but the annual trend is still down

December's migration gain was bigger than December 2017 but the annual trend is still down

Statistics NZ estimates the country received a net migration gain of 48,300 residents in the 12 months to December.

That was based on an estimated 145,800 permanent or long term arrivals and 97,500 permanent or long term departures.

Last month Statistics NZ introduced a new system of measuring migrant arrivals and departures, based on their movements in and out of the country over a 16 month period.

It estimates the monthly and annual figures during that period and adjusts them each month as more data becomes available, which is why the monthly figures are now provisional estimates.

Statistics NZ has also adjusted upwards the figure for the net gain in the 12 months to November to 48,000, from 43,400 when it first released that figure last month.

"As new data becomes available, the model has more information about the border crossings it is trying to estimate," Statistics NZ said.

"So, with an extra month of data available, this causes shifts in the estimated number of migrant arrivals and departures, thus leading to a change in the net migration numbers."

Statistics NZ's latest estimates are that the net gain in December was 10% greater than it was in December 2017, with a net gain of 3052 people in December last year, compared to 2772 in December 2017.

However on a annual basis it says the trend is still down, with an estimated net gain of 48,278 in 2018, down -8.3% compared to 2017's net gain of 52,651.

Statistics NZ estimates there was a net loss 8152 NZ citizens last year and a net gain of 56,431 citizens of other countries.

India is now the biggest source country for migrants, with a net gain of 9041 from that country last year, compared to a net gain of 5141 from China, which has now slipped back to third place behind the Philippines which contributed a net gain of 6247 last year.

Of the 145,800 people who arrived permanently or long term last year, the biggest group were NZ or Australian citizens (who do not require visas), followed by 32,611 on work visas, 29,760 on visitor visas, 24,071 on student visas and 14,336 on residence visas.

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"There you go, Winston! One of your manifesto promises fulfilled. Now. Let's have another chat about CGT..."

@bw , yr being a little generous on that one


Please, please... no more young men from the third world flooding in. Why do we want to change our culture and demographics so dramatically?

What's wrong with the third world. I checked out the Unicef India Youtube channel and it looks like a nice place. They have wonderful cuisine and sound urban planning practices including designated streets. Diversity is a strength! OMG but did I mention the food Canton! We have hardly any chefs in New Zealand and our businesses need these people for their skills.

We need more Dairy's...

We have quite enough Poms too, can we knock that lot on the head.. And we had quite a few South Africans in the last decade too. Lets give the South Americans a go, they are a fun bunch from the few i've interacted with.

The pillars of Modern Marxism are still standing, it seems.


A reminder: NZ First promised to slash migration to 10,000. I believe Labour was closer to 30,000. Both criticised National for relying on migration to drive growth at the expense of productivity and quality of life for New Zealanders.

Shock, horror. Politicians tell lies to get elected? What, here in New Zealand? Surely, not?

We need a wall. Westerners only please.

What does a westerner mean? Where are you from?


It would have to be a seawall and that would seriously upset the good people of St Heliers,Mission Bay etc whose property values would plummet without the view.

Need more taxpayers to pay for pensions for people like THE MAN.

"Statistics NZ estimates the country received a net migration gain of 48,300 residents in the 12 months to December"

Why do I picture a government official wetting his index finger, pointing it to the sky while looking up and coming up with this "estimate"

@Yvil you have a great sense of humour ..........and the wind on his finger is coming from the general direction of Asia

Thanks Boatman, the Swiss are not normally known for their sense of humour ; )

That explains a lot.

Welcome and make NZ great again!

Okay , so my vote for Winston "hit the pause button'' Peters was not wasted after all .

Heh. It's barely moved down (about 16% drop from previous year), truly they must have 'laboured' long to deliver such a result. Most of the nominal reduction coming from discovery that there has been a massive error in accounting. So before that error was discovered the coaltion had manged to cut 10k from 70k to 60k. A far cry from the 30k labour promised and 10k Winston first promised.

Glad to see there are more Indians than Chinese. Indian Americans have done incredibly well for themselves, and Kiwi Indians are starting to come into their own in NZ. Indias government - for all its flaws - is a capitalist democracy, and their citizens don't come here with so many strings attached.

They speak English so are more likely to interact and more likely to distribute themselves rather than clump - in other words not ideal multi-culturalists.

A couple of the brightest immigrants I've met are of Indian origin but I do also meet many very pleasant and efficient young Indians working in petrol stations and on supermarket checkouts and I do not understand how NZ benefits from them. I suspect in general we are getting students who cannot make it into USA, Canada or the UK.

And Australia also shut down all the crappy 6 month courses visas. We are getting lots as a result.

s4AUh, when say "Indian Americans" do you mean Apache, Comanche or Sioux?

Aren't they all helicopters?

North American Indians include Innuit and Metis

Bring in people from the third world and you end up with a third world country - look what Indian bureaucrats did to Africa!! The place was absolutely wrecked by importing Indians to work as civil service administrators,

You’ve previously given us a pretty good clue as to your ethnicity (or part of it). If you’re going to talk about model citizens or otherwise, you should examine the statistics. You’re in a glass house my friend, and should stop throwing stones.

Was it Nig who claimed their family had been here for 800 years?

David Chaston is ever vigilant with his moderating, I can say no more. Draw what conclusions you want, but I implied nothing!

Now that New Zealand has all the infrastructure in place, Nig would like anyone whose family immigrated here in the last 200 years to politely go back to where they came from.

[I’m not ending up like PropertyPrices2Fall. Not today anyway.]

He will be phoning in a months time asking how to turn the power back on, or why there’s no water coming from the tap.

European Migrants from the UK have got a case to stay, they brought a treaty with them, electricity, Universities etc...The British Isles was a superpower 200 years ago and is still an example of an advanced first world country. The new immigrants are from the third world!

Also the wheel. The wheel is pretty sweet.

They brought railways, steam ships and automobiles.

What about fire? Did they bring fire? No, I think that was sorted already.

Le Sigh. I kinda see your point, we have gone from migrants who came here sharing technology, built what we have today, fought in wars to preserve our freedom, to migrants who come here to free load off the infrastructure and the welfare that was built up from the hard work of those before us.

I think we simply need to stop importing taxi drivers and cleaners, but keep on bringing in the doctors and civil engineers, regardless of their ethnicity. I sympathise with cultural concerns, but again I think we should count ourselves lucky we have very little immigration from the Middle East, Pakistan and North Africa. London does, I did my OE there, the place is stuffed, literally and figuratively. Increase the number of fruit pickers, but send em back as soon as the season is over without any exceptions.

Civil Engineers trained in first world, world class universities and that have been to first world primary and secondary schools. Some of the 'civil engineers' coming in from Pakistan and India have never seen a computer before they have been to University and when they use computers in University it is an older model in a limited capacity. I know this because for humanitarian aid - I use to teach them. We don't want people trained in a third world environment because that is the environment they will create in NZ, buildings engineered and the health needs of people taken care of like it is at 'home'. The problem with such a large immigrant population is they now all want the engineering standards and health standards of 'home'; built and healed by their country men in NZ and they think everyone wants this. We should provide an exchange service for a few so they can learn about how first world medical systems work and how to engineer according to first world standards but we should not be allowing these people to turn our first world health system and first world infrastructure into a third world health system and third world engineered infrastructure.

That's a good point. Quality immigrants with qualifications properly checked out. Also agree on less from the countries you mentioned. The culture is too different.

Bring in people from the third world and you end up with a third world country - look what Indian bureaucrats did to Africa!! The place was absolutely wrecked by importing Indians to work as civil service administrators and look at what is happening to Auckland Council now its full of Indian bureaucrats.

Posting the same thing three times = nagging!

Probably trying to post his comment on third world internet.

Must be those third world Chorus installers putting in three fibres instead of one.

Maybe in his case "nigging"? LOL

"" Statistics NZ has also adjusted upwards the figure for the net gain in the 12 months to November to 48,000, from 43,400 when it first released that figure last month. ""

So can we trust these figures? For example does Kiwibuild get recalibrated up another 10%?

as was explained in the article the other day, the shortterm accuracy won'y be great but will self correct over the trailing months. Still better than relying on departure card "intentions", this is actuallr based on what really happens.

The only figure I trust is issuing permanent residency visas.
Then there are no figures for the average salary of immigrants - we are promised they pay more tax and receive fewer benefits than the rest of us but all the figures come from other countries and carefully ignore the children of immigrants born soon after arriving. The wealthy and telented immigrants I meet everyday are way out-numbered by checkout operators and fuel pump attendants.

As of April 1 2019 the new regime of "Pay-Day-Filings" commences - the IRD receives the entire populations payroll information within 10 days

So there can be no excuse for not knowing the earnings by sector including "work visa" payrolls, Migrants here and working for less than 5 years etc etc etc - the mind boggles

Somehow I doubt it will happen

What is pay-day filing

I did ask once why they did not cross-check resident and work visas with IRD returns - it would have identified the 'skilled' immigrants arrested for smuggling drugs who had been here for 9 years but never paid any tax (that case a couple of years ago) and it would be a great help identifying the widespread worker exploitation of immigrants (ref Prof Stringers report). The answer was not done for reasons of privacy. I've been told it is done in Australia. Since INZ has less than 30 investigators maybe they simply don't have the staff.

Think about it from the point-of-view of

(a) Police crime section
(b) Police Drug section
(c) Police Money Laundering
(d) Immigration NZ
(e) Inland Revenue - income tax avoidance
(f) Inland Revenue - GST and PAYE avoidance
(g) RBNZ estimates department
(ii) Statistics NZ estimations department

They should all be frothing at the mouth and getting wet between the knees

Think about it from the point of view of INZ - it will identify the mistakes they have made. Even the very best bureaucrat is human and makes mistakes - only the very best are willing to have their mistakes identified.

Just out of interest are you going to include every Australian that (theoretically) gets a resident visa on arrival every time they enter the country? Or are you going to exclude all Australian passport holders and permanent visa holders?

How are you capturing NZers heading overseas for the big OE.. and their return.. or lack of?

Your numbers are going to be rubbish.

The stats issued by INZ do not include Aussies.

Luckily, the stats issued by Stats NZ do.. And NZ citizens departing and returning.. and no doubt a bunch of other groups your daft idea would miss.

And you can find the data here:

Thank you for the link but it seems to show who is travelling into NZ. So an aussie who is resident in NZ but visits family in Oz every fortnight would count as 26 but a tourist who change into students and then workers and finally permanent residents without leaving NZ will show as a single tourist arrival.
So I trust
where you will find in the last decade 8 Australians have applied for permanent residency and 3 were rejected.

wow, you can't operate a fairly basic website, and you think only 8 Australians moved here long term in the last decade...

No, those 8 will be ones that didn't get automatic visas due to (most likely) failing the good-character test (ie, they probably had convictions of a less than trivial nature)

Poor old Stats NZ is having it pretty rough.
A census that was underwhelming in the number who completed it with an inability to follow up on those who didn't do so due to uncertainties regarding returns online/paper. And now uncertainties over net migration estimates with loss of departure cards.

I do worry about importing 3rd world attitudes and inefficient workers from 3rd world, we need skilled staff only, not a courier driver who throws my parcels in the garden instead of being efficient and courteous.

Are you certain that Kiwi courier drivers are better?

Without a doubt. Like Chorus and their 'contractors' the immigrant courier drivers are being engaged on rock bottom reward structures (which is why they were allowed to flock here) and have completely displaced the higher skilled workers from New Zealand who preceeded them. To make matters worse they come from economies that have even lower levels of productivity and complete absence of cultural norms like 'customer service' its a terrible state of affairs, personally I think they should all be sent packing.

While agreeing with much of your comment I have found most Indian low paid workers very polite and pleasant people. But is immigration policy about 'niceness' or benefit to all of NZ and especially our low paid and low skilled?

We recently moved house and had some internet connection issues. Two Indian contractors - pleasant enough guys - from Chorus came out, they took about 4 hours to fix it. I politely inquired to one of them why it took so long, he said one of then was in training and had plugged the wrong wire into the wrong outlet. Hopeless

Like many POMs I have a soft spot for Indians; great food; like cricket; speak English; interlinked history - the UK was altered by India and visa versa more so than say UK and Maori where the influence on the POMs was much weaker (did learn trench fighting but we didn't copy their food). The only really unpleasant Indian I've met was the one who installed my fibre - polite with me but the way he treated his fellow Indian subordinate was awful and embarrassing and would have had him murdered if he had been a Kiwi (or POM).

Alternative headline: New government ruler gets a new government ruler.

Bilbo's 5 step plan to save the nation:

1) Install turn style people counters at every big airport. Christchurch, welly, Auckland, Queenstown. Good enough for me.
2) Sack 50% the monkeys at StatsNZ
3) Put half of the money saved into a new govt venture paying people to paint native Greywacke rocks from their own homes. This will drive GDP growth through the roof without importing people.
4) Cut transport infrastructure funding. You've got hunders fewer bureaucrats commuting to work after all.
5) Actually cut immigration numbers for real, because *surprise* we can tell how many are coming in and out!

A vote for the devious riddler is always wasted Boatman

What a racist bunch , to be honest .

Are you referring to ""Of the 145,800 people who arrived permanently or long term last year, the biggest group were NZ or Australian citizens""?

Its not racist to speak up when you are concerned about whats happening to your country.

Your comment above at 16:27 saying "I think they (immigrants) should all be sent packing" is racist

The inability to remove people residing in one country but born in another country is a sign of a loss of sovereignty. NZ must protect its sovereignty and its right to send people packing from other countries that are a detriment to New Zealand.
Only by exercising its rights does New Zealand protect its rights.

It is racist if you exclude immigrants from your own country of origin. Otherwise it is a discussion of numbers and economics.

So we can't have a say on immigration? How many people do you think we should have coming into the country each year?

About 20k to 25k - that would still be very high by the standards of other countries but NZ has special relationship with various PI countries and we have more marrying foreigners than most countries. Just want them really skilled as permanent residents. Work visas should involve an expensive annual work permit - enough to encourage training and discourage low wage immigrants.

Yeah it’s pretty sad isn’t it.

Here is another stat showing the rapidly changing demographics of AKL, though this will no doubt be called out for being racist by the PC brigade as well. The 2001 Census had AKL had 68% Europeans and in 2013 it was 59%. Asians were 14% and are now 23%. The Maori and PI proportion more or less stayed the same.

There is intermarriage. Or will be until the multi-culturalist fanatics ban it.

All categories are bad (have more exceptions than commonality) but surely 'Asian' is the worst - clumping Afghans and Thais, Turks and Filipinos. Yuk.