Migration continues its upward trend, likely adding around 65,000 new residents to Auckland's population in the year to March

Migration continues its upward trend, likely adding around 65,000 new residents to Auckland's population in the year to March
Photo: George Parrilla

Migration continues its seemingly unstoppable upward climb, boosting this country's population with a record net gain of 71,932 in the year to March, according to Statistics NZ.

That compares with net gains of 67,619 in the year to March 2016, 56,275 in the year to March 2015, 31,914 in the year to March 2014 and 2542 in the year to March 2013.

Statistics NZ population statistics manager Peter Dolan said this was mainly due to the rising number of migrant arrivals in New Zealand, with fewer people leaving the country.

A record 129,518 migrants arrived in this country in the year to March, while 57,586 departed on a permanent or long term basis, giving a net gain of 71,932.

There was a net loss of 1341 New Zealand citizens over the 12 months, with 31,995 New Zealanders arriving back on the country after long term stays overseas, while 33,336 departed long term.

Over the same period 97,523 citizens of other countries arrived permanently or long term, while 24,250 departed permanently or long term, giving a net gain of 73,273 non-New Zealand citizens.

The biggest source of migrants was Asia, with a net gain of 33,789 from the region in the year to March, which included 11,030 from China and Hong Kong, 7999 from India and 4459 from the Philippines.

That was followed by 16,771 from Europe which included 6416 from the UK, 3427 from Germany and 3365 from France.

There was a net gain of 1018 people from Australia.

By visa type, the biggest group of were the 43,700 people who arrived on work visas, followed by 31,995 New Zealand citizens (who do not need visas to enter the country), 23,900 on student visas and 16,800 on residency visas.

The latest numbers will add further pressure to Auckland's already stretched resources such as housing, transport and other infrastructure, with the region remaining the most popular destination by far with 57,710  migrants saying they intended to live in the region, followed by 12,719 in Canterbury and 10,080 in Wellington.

However those numbers are a bit on the light side because another 19,076 migrants did not state where they intended to live, which probably pushed the actual number of arrivals in Auckland closer to 65,000 in the year to March.

Net long term migration

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It won't be a slow comments day in here today!

Only population can force central and local govt to speed up infrastructure program as NZ is always very reactive on this. Everyone knows you never get wealthy by saving but earning more. Same applies to economical and social development. There's far more opportunities in a generation where "crisis" is all over the place.


an exert straight out of Population ponzinomics.

then it's been ponzi since 1840


true if you look strictly at natural resources per person - But as far as "wealth building" goes, as soon as wepassed the point where we replaced the value from extracting resources with pure increases in DEBT (amid declining resources) we were well into ponzi nomics.

I mean its pretty obvious population growth alone solves nothing - look at India. Resources per capita (and the value extracted from them) is what it has always been about

mrp ? Learn: The UK are complaining about migrants
Yet their immigration numbers are small as a percentage of population compared to New Zealand's immigration numbers the past few years !
NZ govt is negligent


Build a low income economy. Increase immigration.

I am not sure this is 100% correct , not all migrants earn low wages

I can visualise Peters salivating at all these news on migration. Hope the media keeps the focus on till the election. Great going, guys.

Peters was in with the Labour government when the previous high was 50,000 pa.

He didn't change anything then (enjoying the baubles of office no doubt) - so why would he do anything now?

Unfortunately that's true. Peters definitely seems to be a man of many baubles!. Maybe prior to the election he could address this perception and encourage the voters to give him another chance. I'm not holding my breath though.


The number of arrivals in one year moving to Auckland is closer to 65,000 ... at 2.4 per house thats 27,000 houses, that should keep the housing crisis ticking along... But as long as it keeps the wages down and the hospital waiting lists long and the roads/pipes clogged its all good. Not to mention the vibrant buzz i get when i feel like a foreigner in my hometown.. keep up the good work National.. Bigger population = better, Just ask the newly arrived migrants why they left...

Surprisingly most are not from Asia!



"The biggest source of migrants was Asia, with a net gain of 33,789 from the region in the year to March, which included 11,030 from China and Hong Kong, 7999 from India and 4459 from the Philippines"

So stoked - really looking forward to even worse traffic and more often being the only European in eye-shot on the North Shore of Auckland.

More Asians under student and residency visa, but they are not the largest under work visas, see more here http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11842859

It's not actually true, interestingly.

mvgsmf laid out some of the numbers. The key thing to note about the Herald article today is that it's only pertaining to the numbers coming in on experienced work visas, not the PTE-to-Residency education scheme and any other schemes (e.g. family visa).

Misleading if one reads it as being about a split of the total migration numbers.

Of the total 128,816 arrivals, 16,833 had residence visas, 23,846 student visas, 6338 visitors and 694 others.

Despite China and India being among the biggest source countries for permanent residents, they are not among the top five for direct migrant workers.

Massey University sociologist Paul Spoonley said migrant from Asian countries were less likely to get direct access to New Zealand on skilled work visa.

"They are more likely to transition to permanent residence through temporary work and study visa routes using options such as the transition to work provisions," said Professor Spoonley, an expert on immigration.

The number quoted in the herald are for skilled wokers only.

Asia is by far the biggest source of migrants once all visa types are included

In total yes, but in the skilled work visa category Asians are no longer the largest group. Which is the point I think Rickstrauss is making. The change from July to prioritise skilled visa people and make it harder for the unskilled to achieve residency, will deliver an increasingly higher ratio of non Asian permanent resident migrants.

Where is 2.4 per house conjured up from?

That was the average People Per household last consensus?

The official Stats NZ figure from 2013 is 2.7 people/dwelling. This is the number I used for my calculations below. http://www.stats.govt.nz/Census/2013-census/profile-and-summary-reports/...

At the last census Auckland average household 2 plus 97/100 of an aspiring Aucklander. (2.97) If you shift the numbers by 0.1 , housing shortages and demand can take on totally different meanings.

Stats NZ estimates total dwellings at 1,809,800 at 31 Mar 2016 and 1,836,000 at 31 March 2017 giving an annual increase of 26,200 for the whole country. 71,982 migrants plus the extra natural increase of 28,200 would need to fill those at 3.82/household.

The other ways to look at this using the current average of 2.7 people/dwelling:
- Max immigration to maintain this would be 42,540
- We would need to build 42% more dwellings than we currently do (for a total of 37104 dwellings/year)

You're not accounting for replacing existing housing as it wears out. If the life of a house is 50 years, that's 2% of stock that needs replacing each year.

Get rid of derelict housing no longer fit for purpose? Good one. Rent it baby yeah.


2.4 per house.. Nah, thats the old NZ we are done with. A dozen or so in the house, 4 in the garage and another 10 or so in the garden shed/lean to/ wrecked caravan etc, plus all those new car rego's which will do at least 2 per vehicle ... job done!

This is the new NZ, the adoption of 3rd world living conditions and overpopulation... the ultimate vision of the Nat Party.


Indeed - Well done National you can take yesterday off - wait on you have done that already with the she'll be right / do nothing attitude of the last 9 years.

Waiting for some real MSM feedback on the "lite" immigration changes proposed by National to fool silly kiwis in the run up to the election plus Joyce's pitiful crocodile tears over the plight of FHB's.


Camel you are so right
I felt like a foreigner living in my home town Auckland
Heck I was a foreigner in my own street within a few years !
Key & co destroyed the kiwi way of life
The guy would have to rate worse than Muldoon who he idolized !

With respect, John Key and Muldoon couldn’t be more opposite. Muldoon was a stubborn man, but highly intelligent with a lot of good-will towards New Zealanders. He wanted to maintain the Kiwi way of life at all costs. Damage to the Kiwi way of life happened after Muldoons tenure, but during John Keys.

One other notable and difference between Mr Muldoon and Mr Key is that Mr Key is alive.

Not morally he isn't.

Scarf That was brilliant !
No pulse on John K for sure !
Typical of wall st forex trader
As for Muldoon it was Mr Key who himself said he admired him not me !

John Key did not let all the migrants in , it was Helen Clarke who did

The quality of migrant is definitely on the up from a few years ago. There are a lot of white collar workers moving over here from Europe. The problem is there is a shortage of blue collar ones.

The upheaval we are seeing in the US and Europe is not going to change so it is a case of getting the balance right to match the infrastructure growth.
To turn the tap off completely would be totally stupid and a knee jerk reaction.

At the end of the day its OK because i was having a chat down the pub with some bloke called John Key and word is its all about less kiwis leaving for Oz, he never trusts the stats nz figures those bureaucrats couldnt tell you what 2+2 equals


With the number of Kiwis leaving roughly balancing the number of Kiwis arriving, why do the politicians always mention: Its the less number of Kiwis leaving which is causing this "anomaly".
NO. Right now there are just a huge number of foreigners arriving. That's it! Fullstop.

I think the Govt is saying there are more Kiwis arriving/returning than PREVIOUSLY, which they hadn't counted on.

and the way they say it, they make out it is there fault for leaving and returning home, they want kiwis to leave and not come back

There's no way I'm returning with another 72,000 odd fresh off the planes
You can't even go to the local beach without feeling like you are in another country
Shellfish all gone . Roads filled with illegal drivers Just the constant speed camera traps and tickets for traveling a mere 4kmph over speed limit
Glad I'm out of it

Kiwis (young and old) should be given first priority in terms of jobs and housing. There is no point having a huge number of foreigners on temporary working visa's coming in, taking up the jobs and accommodation that belong to the locals! It is really sad to live in a country where the locals are being sacrificed for cheaper foreign labour. This is not right.


Okay...fess up...which one of you jokers cracked Double-GZ's password and is posting from his account?

Oh very good, RickStrauss. I was trying to think of a response to Double-GZ's post, (it certainly didn't seem like his usual comment), scrolled down to find your retort and thought 'can't beat that'. Well done!
I agree with D-GZ's comment too.

I have feelings too! I just feel sick in my stomach to see the locals being pushed aside by foreigners with temporary working visa's. Some of the foreigners are obviously highly qualified in IT and are more than willing to accept lower level salary as their flights have pretty much just grounded. They are also likely to use job offers to secure them Permanent Residencies in the longer run. I have seen too many examples of this lately! It hurts to see them taking up corporate roles where local Kiwis have been sacrificed. This is so wrong, and I'm referring to Kiwis (young and old) who are highly trained, highly qualified, who have NZ working experience. They have been sacrificed for cheaper foreign labour because sadly, most organisations (private or public) are driven by profits. As a nation we should put Kiwis first before all the foreigners otherwise we'll end up being a laughing stock we could lose our identity among the developed nations.

It's true, normally DGZ's spelling and grammar are as impeccable as ZS's. Well, at least when marketing houses.
And taking issue with wealthy Asians coming in? Imposter!

more to read here,
Brexit, Trump....may be the drive?

Where are all the German and French folk? I never come across them in day to day life.

I have 2-3 German colleagues on my floor. And I know that all the workers at La Fourchette restaurant in St Heliers Bay are French :-)

It's dangerous to speak in absolutes. I speak Fluent French and dine there often. The last I spoke French to a waitress she replied in English that she was from Siberia. Maybe they sent her home.

a lot down south, mostly come in as young on working holidays and travel NZ.
meet lots all the time when i am down there on tracks

Quite a lot of French/Germans in the Eastern Bays. St Heliers, Kohi Mission Bay. They like the beach/cafe culture.

There are a fair few from the Baltic as well.

Zachary if you still haven't fixed your mortgages, BNZ is offering 4.69% for 2 years fix. It's better than the rate you had before.

DubleD do you collect commission advertising BNZ fixed rate mortgages ?

Il y a beaucoup de Français à Ponsonby

If you do not talk to the White Immigrants you do not realize them, you thought they are Kiwis, when I worked for MBIE, 60% of my colleages are from US, Canada, UK and other Europeans. My small team had only one Kiwi! it is easy to reckon Asians even they are 2nd or third generations here in NZ, people still consider them immigrants!

Wow that's a lot of people wanting to come to New Zealand

I don't think we need to worry about negative long-term effects of turning the tap down slightly either. Volume increased markedly from developing countries when the tap was thrown open, and this will be the case whenever NZ needs to open the tap in future.

But now would seem an appropriate time to take a breather and start building up some infrastructure and housing stock.

No shit, do you have any idea how many people are living in 3rd world conditions? We could literally swamp this country if we only took a small percentage of all of them.

They come to NZ because it's easy to get in
They prefer larger countries for sure
NZ has the bonus of no land transfer tax Low property taxation compared to elsewhere
A good semi non corrupt legal system
Low food prices
Cars aren't that expensive
Education is relatively good
Health system works & compared to others elsewhere is very well managed ( thanks Tony Ryall)
Beaches are some of the best in the world ( not east coast bays)
If you can afford to own a house you will enjoy a good life in NZ albeit the stresses on infrastructure need to be addressed like a second harbour bridge. Forget the tunnel idea it's both too costly & will flood.
It would also be nice for NZs dairy industry to Oh I'm on a rant now Bye

Only country in the so called developed countries that allow so cheaply.

Strange but true.
Sons mate and his wife have just returned to Aussie after being here and working for 5 years.
Main reason they are going back is house prices.
For 450/500k he said they can buy a new house North of Brisbane where as in Hamilton NZ the same price is buying a do up which is expensive.
Thats what he said anyway.

Its true , but you cant blame anyone other than ourselves , our land is expensive and out building materials costs are horrendous

I found out yesterday that NZ refuses residency visa's to anyone with a BMI over 35! Not sure if that applies to work visas too but as part of the health screen, if you are obese then no dice!

apparently there is a door and if you don't fit through it's bad luck buddy.

Double standards?, I can think of a couple of Fat Chance guys who bought their way in.

The door was wide...open...if you cross some palms with silver, gold and other rare elements.

Plus we already have a couple of Ministers living off the fat of the land today....and grazing well at our expense.

I know obesity is worshiped in some Countries, but as a rule it denotes affluence, and with influence and guidance, and a strict diet and a reduced wage in NZ....any immigrant can change for the better.

Maybe not our Ministers as that would be against National tastes and stuffing themselves silly...at the poor taxpayers expense. But I digress.

Even New Immigrants will not starve and if they do get a Ministerial appointment, they could get liposuction and tie the knot, stomach wise...and be a slim as a rake....just like our betters...if they have deeper pockets.

The top down theory still applies, does it knot. If ya swallow their mantra. The door is always open...just not wide enough.

Great speech,worthy of the house
Speaking of liposuction...

Alter Ego you had me laughing !
NZ could advertise itself as the weight reduction plan immigrants choice because after you pay for housing they'll be no money left for food !

Unfortunately there is a lot of truth in the fact that there is no money left for food. For some it is no chance of rent either and no shite show in hell of a mortgage.

What a State our Nation has become. Welfare State, Poor state of affairs.

How the mighty have fallen.for the fatuous Leaders...who could not manage a real job to get off their fat arses and add to our economy...

So fat is ok for some, a burden to others.Just wait till the little emperors are without clothes......eeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwwww....what a thought..

I haven't heard of any migrant who couldn't fit through Maurice Williamsons door yet ?

If you paid enough Maurie the Wheel would help you through- see the help he gave the illustrious Mr Donghau Liu.

Oooooh how quickly we forget

Now consigned to the annals of history - forgotten about - he doesn't exist

Even wondered how his Newmarket Carlton Bowling Club Project was going

I think money buys you love in NZ....ill leave you to think of those that fit that bill.

Money can buy you love anywhere.

I think money buys you love in NZ....ill leave you to think of those that fit that bill.

Money & power found the former mayor of Auckland Korean company with extras

Does this hold true for all countries? If this is true there will already be lots of complaints from some for discrimination. It is quite clear though that health issue and that other benefit given to those who can't be bothered to work are some of the great drains of our funds. Just really hoping that before one can take advantage of a benefit that they have already been in the work force long enough and contributed sufficiently towards these benefits. It's NOT fair for people who have been working our butts off day-in and day-out contributing hefty amounts of taxes while a big bulk of it are just going to some lazy people out there. You know what needs to be done is to change the way we give benefits. Clearly it is being abused and people who have all the excuses so they can't work are taking so much advantage out from it. Just look at who are the people going through all the troubles every day to work.

Yes, you are right, and who is going to look after ageing population, who is going to pay tax to support benefits and fast growing aged population. NZ needs migrants in some industries and pump blood to boost the economy. The issue is we need more investment in infrastructure and need to change the way we provide benefit, no great deal of incentives for lower skilled people to work at the moment. They love living on benefit regardless we have made lots of efforts and investment for them to move back to work. Remove benefit for immigrants until they have citizenship instead of two years at the moment, increase number of years from current 10 years to 20 or 25 years to be eligible for NZ Super.

I think the script writer for DGZ-ZAC has just done an about turn, love and kisses all round.
Why would that be now?

Take a walk down the aisles in Pak N save Wairau Road Glenfield and you could be in downtown Beijing! ENOUGH!

Beijing South the Chinese call it !

Beijing has such ugly mall?

We are a small country that owes much of it's appeal to our relative isolation, fortunate political history and circumstance. With the combination of resource scarcity and population pressures making much of the rest of the world increasingly insecure we can expect migration pressure basically forever. We need to have a national conversation about this. Both National and Labour are too scared of giving offence to take a position. It is troubling that NZ first are the only political party which now represent my interests and those of my 2 children. I used to mock Winston as a populist xenophobe among other things. After 3 terms of this National government and the direction our country has taken I'll admit I was wrong. I will vote NZ first in spite of their flaws (many) because they represent the interests of middle NZers more than any other party.

I have done a complete uturn as well. When Don Brash was the leader of National I went to Labour, but didnt want to, but disliked Don Brash so much. But when they changed to John Key I went to National.

But I dont think I will ever vote National again, Winston looks like my only logical choice now, which sounds really weird. What National has done in the last 9 years is criminal.

I went to live in the UK 1999, came back 12 years later and I dont recognise the country. I use to think it was weird to see homeless people in London, now NZ has homeless people. More people does not equal success and a cool culture.

It means a watering down of what it is to be a kiwi, a beautiful country, where it was easy to meet and say hi to people. Now a lot of that is going.

65,000 new residents and yet I still can't find a decent painter or electrician.

We also use to have great burgers and bakeries they have nearly disappeared. Now we have to go to the fancy burger places, not the normal takeaways.

You can get nice Indian meals now though

Thats true and lunch for $10 all up

If you want a decent old painter or old electrician on NShore or Orewa I can advise !

Vote for National and in 2018 immigration net gain to touch 100000 Plus. National milestone - Sign of prosperity.

Think and Vote

Vote National for massive population increase! It's a win win!

I would be interested in how the statisticians come up with statements like all these migrants intend living in Auckland. I am a frequent flier into NZ and the only question I and everyone gets asked is "final port of destination". No one asks where do you intend to live or work. Sure when the numbers are big like they are in Auckland then it all looks pretty obvious from the bus window. My observations based on dwelling consents and numbers of properties available to sell or let (supply and demand) indicates a more complex distribution of population. Forget Christchurch, it is a lost cause. Greater Wellington is mostly a media hype.

Talk about fait accompli ..............

Why is the Government not transparent with us about immigration ?

Why are these eye watering numbers just sprung on us each month like a bolt out of the blue ?

How many Visa's have been approved where the recipient has not yet arrived in the country ?
How many immigrants are we to expect between now and December 2017?
How many applications for work visa' and PR have they received each month in the past year
How many work visas have been approved and taken up ?
How many have been approved and not yet taken up ?

Does it not dawn on the Beehive that we need to know these numbers so we can make decisions regarding investment , construction , employment , training and recruitment decisions and a host of other factors .?

You know the main answer already Boatman.
All of NZ know the answer and in Sept if National get back in the answer to the old age questions of how dumb kiwis really are and how little regard we actually have for the next generation will be revealed to all.


The other Nat Govt legacy....
The 100-page report, published today by the Ministry for the Environment and Statistics New Zealand, has been described as "damning" by the country's largest independent environmental organisation, which is calling for a dramatic reduction in cow numbers.


Parts of NZ look like little India and little China, dgz area especially so. Rivers and lakes becoming cow toilets, and everywhere else that a jucy camper can access is looking like a toilet as well. Throw in the number of kiwis 18-35 raised and educated here living in Stralia, over 500k in Queensland alone, and one has to say Nationals legacy is looking a bit like what the quality tourist in the Jucy camper left behind....

Stuff have actually produced some decent work for a change (I know it's difficult to believe) with some useful charts and analysis on the immigration debate.


$65,000 more immigrants, translates to 50,000 more cars on street & more log jam due to infrastructure issues