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Migrants pouring in from overseas as more NZ citizens left this country than returned last year

Migrants pouring in from overseas as more NZ citizens left this country than returned last year

Immigration is continuing to surge upwards with a record net gain of 70,588 people last year.

That compares with 64,930 in 2015, 50,922 in 2014 and 22,468 in 2013, meaning population growth from migration has more than trebled in the last three years.

China was the biggest source of migrants with a net gain of 10,310 from that country last year, although that was 1433 fewer than arrived from China in 2015.

But there was a big jump in the number of migrants from Hong Kong, with a net gain of 833 from that country last year, up 124 on 2015.

After China the biggest source of migrants was India with a net gain of 8899 residents from that country, well down from the 13,292 gain from India in 2015.

After that the biggest source countries were the UK 5588, The Philippines 4511 and South Africa 4297.

There was a net loss of 1818 New Zealand citizens last year and net gain of 72,406 citizens of other countries.

In total 127,305 people from all countries arrived in New Zealand on a permanent or long term basis last year, while 56,717 left on a permanent or long term basis, giving a net gain 70,588.

Of the 127,305 people who arrived in 2016, 41,576 were on work visas, up 10.1% compared to 2015, followed by 37,704  Australian and New Zealand citizens (who do not require visas) up 5.6% compared to 2015.

But there was a big decline in the number of students coming to this country to study, with 24,562 arrivals on student visas last year, down 11.9% compared to 2015.

That was mainly caused by a big drop in the number of students from India, with just 6702 student arrivals from India last year compared with 10,833 in 2015, a decline of 38.1%.

That followed a number of scandals which rocked this overseas student education sector last year.

There was also a big decline in the number of students coming from the Philippines, with numbers from that country dropping back to 1570 last year from 2123 in 2015 (-26%).

The falls in student numbers from India and The Philippines were partially offset by a 131.6% rise in student numbers from South Africa (1047 for the year) and and a 32.6% rise from Korea (704 for the year).

The latest migration numbers will bring little relief to the pressures that high population growth is putting on infrastructure and services such as housing, transport, education and health in Auckland, with a net population growth into the region from migration of at least 33,916 last year, compared to 29,979 in 2015 and 23,006 in 2014.

However the actual population gain in Auckland was probably closer to 40,000 last year, because another 14,283 people did not state where they intended to live when they arrived, and many of them would also have settled in Auckland.

Net long term migration

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The ' Net long term migration - annual 12-16' chart will be drawn here.
The 'Net long term migration monthly gain or loss 12-16' chart will be drawn here.

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Just did the maths. If this migration was to remain constant then NZ would have more people here than the UK's current population in about 85 years. UK's current population is 64.1 million.
We need to have a discussion about what we want our long term population to be and why. To have one or two politicians decide this for short term economic reasons is undemocratic and just plain stupid.

What maths did you do 70 000 people X 85 years is == 5.95 Million - how did u get to 64 Million ?

Doesn't matter 'what maths' when you have at-least 10 up-votes - (just kidding)
I'll up-vote you airin.

I gave it the thumbs up for this statement. "We need to have a discussion about what we want our long term population to be and why."

Fair enough, but a constant 2.1% population growth pa (mostly due to immigration) over the next 85 years gives a total population of 28 million.
Still worth having a decent discussion about.

So Jamin makes a completely wrong statement and gets 11 thumbs up, I'm staggered at the stupidity of the commentators

Trump, that's why.

The clear explanation lies in KH's comment above.

no need t do math just check the population / immigration clock on stats nz
new passport issued every 6 minutes 29 seconds
should hit 5 million very soon at this rate, then what will be the target 7

Does this include or overlap the international student numbers? As these are around 120,000 in 2016.

Based on: 70,588 is 3.16% OF NZ's 2013 ( 4.471 million ) Compound interest over 85 years is 65.59 million.

"New Zealand's population (4.69 million in 2016) has a 90 percent probability of increasing to 5.29–6.58 million in 2043, and to 5.30–7.88 million in 2068. " source:
I make 70588 to be about 1.5% of 4.69m.

Yes you're right Jethro. Sorry to everyone. Definitely a mistake in the maths. Must have been smoking too much crack for breakfast again!

I agree with Jethro; math is wrong. it is +1.5%.

Yes 70,000 immigrants equates to about 1.5%, but isn't our natural growth rate about 0.5%. This must be added, so the total might be nearer 2%. Note how out of kilter our growth from immigration is compared to our natural growth rate.
More accurate figures 2015 births 61038, deaths 31608, net 29430 which equates to 0.65%. So the total growth rate is 2.15%.

NZ needs a Trump style non PC "extreme tightening" on immigration to take stock, a thorough 3 to 5 year assessment/review on ACTUAL outcomes of immigration open door policy - what they're doing and if they are adding any value.


The words " Donald Trump" need to be kept out of any rational conversation about this. This is simply about our lifestyles and how we want New Zealand to function. Simply about the maths of population.

Except insofar as he is the sort of character that could rise to power as a result of this sort of situation.

And the sort of character that uses bogus maths to support a bogus slate wipe

New Zealand does not have an immigration open door policy. The immigration door is open only to people who meet certain criteria.

By all means we can discuss tightening up those criteria, but I would hope and expect that if New Zealand were to do so, it would be on a more morally and intellectually coherent basis than the Trump approach.

The American position on immigration has been a total mess for years with institutionalised tolerance of massive illegal immigration. Makes our apparent acceptance of widespread immigration fraud look tame.
If you're going to have laws and criteria then enforce them or change them if you can't be bothered.
The changes from the current government seem perfectly reasonable under the circumstances.
The west generally needs to wake up to the fact that they can't absorb everyone that wants to come from these dysfunctional, benighted sh!tholes.

did not national set about reducing the inflows, or was that just lip service and spin.
their inability to sort any issue is reason and time for change. To whom not sure labour and greens are the answer

If we're going to carry on at this rate, there needs to be an expansion of accommodation, infrastructure and services to contain it. Policy appears to assume that immigrants come in with their money, then disappear in puff of smoke and don't occupy space or require services.


This all seems pointless to me.

Importing a whole bunch of low skilled people we don't have the infrastructure for.

All to drive a temporary upward tick in the GDP.

The 'Brighter future' being delivered.

There's no money/return made in construction its out and out cost that the locals well be left to foot the bill.
Why import low skilled people when there are perfectly capable people on Social Welfare that can be trained and may improve there life being useful and productive?

Provide your evidence that they are low-skilled people.

Everything I hear is that the quality of migrant has gone up substantially over past couple of years. The think the main area of discussion is more focused around quantity rather than quality. A figure of 30/40k per year seems a more reasonable immigration cap.

I think the annual figure of immigrants is not the one to debate. We need to determine the desirable population figure for New Zealand and work out the desirable annual immigration level from that . I see that desired population number debate only infrequently.
My vote would be for a stable population level of about 2 million but I would settle for five million as a political compromise.
Be a better place to live, and we would be wealthier as well.

As long as we rely on an economic system that constantly demands growth, there is no magic number, ask Japan. For population stability and maybe even falling as we have gone past peak people on the planet about 3.5 billion ago, we have to function under a totally different system.
Technology and robotics, properly used, could help us to do this. I'll leave it to you and others to try to figure out how that might look. I know what I think. I will just say that I believe we are capable of solving it, we have the intelligence, do we have the will?

Economics, in general, is populated at its core by a lot of bad ideas. And these bad ideas have come to be accepted as the correct interpretation of how the economy functions and thus have become the basis for economic policy

John Mauldin is a charlatan.
Entitled to his opinion, yes. But his opinion is no more than a regurgitation/reworking of other cherry picked arguments.

The day that man publishes any robust empirical work rebutting the ideas he becries is the day we should start quoting him.

How does that make him a charlatan..?? I find him interesting reading...

Some of my best ideas have come from people who are on the fringes of whatever the field of study is...

eg... the best "Map " I have come across , in describing the nature of the GFC and its aftermath, has come from Ray Dalio..... and he is not even an economist..

Based , maybe largely, on his work I have managed to make the right investment decisions since 2011....

I'd be curious to see what you think...??
( He has even modified the classic perspective in which both supply and demand are measured in quantity and the price relationship between them described in terms of elasticity....
I find Dalios' perspective far, far more useful.... He describes Supply in terms of quantity and demand in terms of money + credit.. )

I have found this perspective to be IMMENSELY useful in terms of playing the game... ie. investing

You won't find that in any kind of per reviewed , empirical published work.... me thinks.

I'm curious to see what u think..??

I'm not knocking mainstream empirical research..... just giving a counter to your view,.. ie.. implying that if it ain't some kind published empirical work, it probably has little value...

The problem is it isn't his writing. That's what makes him a charlatan.

Ray Dalio is in a completely different league to Mauldin. Classically trained in economics/finance and a product of his own intellect.
The supply and demand perspective is effectively the same as how all economists think of it.
You touch on a good point though in that good anecdotal/practical examples aid the understanding a lot more.


I've read Mauldin's work for years, he always gives credit for the writing of others where appropriate and his own work is generally quite original and flavoured with his own style so sorry, don't agree.

Fair point. I'm not saying you can't read him.
But, he only sounds legitimate to anyone who isn't familiar with a more advanced understanding of finance/economics.

You people here moan how inaccurate economist's forecasts are - just look at Mauldin's track record.
It's just the Trump effect - keep telling people how great you (someone) are (is), and they'll start to believe you. Probably as skill he picked up when he trained as a theologist.


The word is out

The NZ Initiative is raising the intensity of its "immigration is good" message with Dr Crampton on the radio waves over the weekend and now heavy-hitter Dr Oliver Hartwitch on TV news last-night extolling the virtues of their "immigration is good" mantra. They are both imports telling us what is good for us

How much are they being paid for this constant stream of propaganda

What they never reflect on is the deteriorating poverty levels of an increasing number of NZ naturals

Imports as opposed to patriots? Naturals as opposed to Unnatural? Scary language.

What data supports the assertion of "deteriorating poverty levels of an increasing number of NZ nationals"?

In any case, the Initiative does reflect on poverty and inequality.

I imagine they will have access to alternative facts to show that the people agree wholeheartedly as well

Winston Peters will be celebrating methinks. Any vote for Labour or for the Greens is effectively a vote for Winston as kingmaker. Each release of these immigration figures ensures yet more National voters will vote NZ First.
"Hmm, what particular baubles would be most tempting?"
"Let me see now, a knighthood, yes definitely a knighthood, that would do, after all I deserve no less."

I think the headlines distort the reality of the stats, a bit.
A very significant proportion of the net gains in migration is coming from students and people on work visas. The majority of these people won't stay permanently.
the increase in permanent residents is closer to 30K per annum.
It would be interesting to distill what impacts the students / work visa migrants have on housing. I would have thought many of these people live in homestays, hostels, or in inner city shoeboxes, so perhaps don't have a massive impact on housing broadly.

I see you have picked up the recent emphasis from the national opinion shaping machine, on the 'fact' that a large percentage of those on student visas, won't stay here.
But is that a reality?
Much recent commentary here has been along the lines that Student Visas are often used as a backdoor tactic to achieve residency and that data about how many 'students' actually study, is weak. If so, how can the government spin machine be so confident in its assertion that most will head home at the end of their visa?

"Fritz: Maybe you should consider the meaning of "net". "in" less "out"equals "net".

And your point? The fact remains that a large proportion of the net migrant numbers is made up of students and people on work visas

Of the gross 127k inward migrants, only 16k were residence visas. The balance were students, work visas, returning kiwis, or Aussies...
Therefore .I maintain my point that permanent non-Australasian immigrants are a small part of the picture

I think you will find the data generally supports that notion

Ps I am not a cheer leader for the current immigration settings. I think they need changing. Just that the arguments are usually overstated on both sides of the fence

An interesting article regarding the dynamics of over-population. You cant compare mice an humans of course but it makes you think..

How mice turned their private paradise into a terrifying dystopia

Travelling the world always makes me appreciate New Zealand because we're not like all those other places. Irreversible changes, I believe for the worse, are being made through these immigration settings.

A 130% increase in South African students coming here ?

Lets hope this is not another scam like the Indian students scam on 2015/16

Yesterdays article on this sight was our falling export earnings.
We have more people to support with less export earnings. Export earnings pay for imports like cars and computers etc.
This sight also featured an article a month or so ago stating that the National government said Auckland needs over 100 billion dollars spent on infrastructure to support the population growth of recent years.
This is reality!!! Population growth is watering down our collective wealth and quality of life.
The only thing population growth is doing is keeping the property ponzi scheme going. People with a vested interest but no love of NZ are telling us we need this population growth. Wake up people! We are trashing our children and grandchildrens future.