Days to the General Election: 20
See Party Policies here. Party Lists here.

Lowest migration gain for month of June since 2014 as population loss to Australia starts to trickle up

Lowest migration gain for month of June since 2014 as population loss to Australia starts to trickle up

Population growth from migration is continuing to decline with the net migration gain dropping to its lowest point for the month of June in four years.

According to Statistics NZ, there was a net gain (long term arrivals minus long term departures) of 2765 people in June, down a whopping 31% compared to the net gain of 4013 in June last year.

Last month's net gain was the lowest it has been in June since 2014.

On an annual basis there was a net gain of 64,995 in the 12 months to June, down 10.1% compared to the previous 12 months and the lowest net gain for that period in since the 12 months ended June 2015.

The lower net gain was caused by fewer people coming to New Zealand on a long term basis, and a rise in the number of people leaving long term.

There were 8485 permanent or long term arrivals in June which was down 7.3% compared to June last year, and 5720 long term departures, up 11.2% compared to June last year.

There was a net loss of 895 New Zealand citizens in June as more New Zealanders left the country to live overseas than arrived back after extended stays out of the country, while there was a net gain of 3660 non-New Zealand citizens during the month.

A noticeable trend is that population loss to Australia is continuing to rise steadily, with a net loss of 453 people across the Tasman in June compared to a net loss of 169 to Australia in June last year.

However the flow across the Tasman is still just a trickle compared to the net loss of 3334 people that occurred in June 2012.

Of the 8485 people who arrived permanently or long term in this country in June, 3152 were on work visas, 2452 were New Zealand or Australian citizens (who do not require visas), 1406 were on student visas and 982 were on residency visas.

In a note of the migration numbers, Westpac Senior Economist Satish Ranchhod said much of the recent decline in migration related to flows with Australia.

"This is likely to be related to firming in the Australian jobs market as well as the prospect of warmer weather across the ditch.

"Looking at flows from other regions, we've seen new arrivals remaining flat as departures continue to rise.

"We expect that migration will continue to ease back over the next few years," he said.

Net long term migration

Select chart tabs »

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.

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.


New Zealand near top of bucket list for Chinese tourists
Next year is the ''New Zealand-China Year of Tourism'' when both countries hope for even more travel between the two countries.Wellington is the top on the wish list for future visitors (56 per cent ), Auckland, (45 per cent) and Queenstown (31 per cent).


Who cares, does your Chinese employer pay you per post? Looks that way

PS more property porn please.....arouse us


Bobster you made my day with one.

Comment with link: 0 thumbs up
Comment with insulting opinion: 24 thumbs up
Maybe it's time to introduce "user pays" instead of "support" to raise the level?

Good luck with that suggestion. If you support this site financially, what are you actually supporting? Posters scoff at Stuff and Trademe commenters but is there really any higher standard here? Why pay for the cow when you get the milk for free?


Yes, now all he needs to do, is to start making comments related to the article. May be very difficult as creativity is stifled by Chinese education system and upbringing.

Well he had a good old moan about how racist kiwis were which i found hilarious coming from a chinese person.

Next I'll insincerely compliment him on how well he uses a knife and fork.

Two implications to possibly note here.
There was still a net gain of 2765 people in June; so still some positive pressure from immigration on the (largely Auckland?) housing market.
Increasing numbers migrating to Australia; an increasing number of Kiiws expressing a view on the future of the New Zealand economy?


To be honest, I think some of it is Chinese and South Asian migrants getting their passport and tootling off to their preferred destination ie Australia. We are a soft touch for entry to Australia, hence why Australia is so hard on us re reciprocal rights for NZ passport holders

Possibly so and there is most likely an element of that there.
Also note that the NZ economy was considered in a more positive light compared to the Australian over the recent past. However this now seems to be the reverse.
The former has probably been there for a while, but something is afoot for the quite significant change.

Well let’s see what happens with this Aussie credit bubble. Anyone fleeing NZ to Australia for brighter economic conditions may well be jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire

True to an extent, however Australia has many territories to choose from for accommodation and a larger pool of living-wage jobs. Australia is were it's at if you're under 40.

lol, keep praying for disasters to prove your twisted points ...dig deeper Bob. you are joining RP to head the encyclopedia of negative news of the year

Eco Bird, what's wrong? Is it the heaps of Kiwibuild homes, apartments in the pipeline at a time Auckland house prices are falling? Business confidence also falling, I mean. what could possibly go wrong?

lol, in your world, all of the above...will keep you or drive you poorer.

In my world nothing would go wrong until the next GFC happens or WWIII starts fact that would present some new opportunities for me, when chicken little of you likes start selling their shacks ...

In my world income and asset values rise everyday without lifting a finger, none of that credit crunch would effect me anymore.

People have to live somewhere and if they cannot pay then the Gov of the day will pay for them ( especially your generous MATES).... and rents will rise, and life goes On.

Apartments and KB effects the lower quartile of terrace homes and apartments and the price of Rubbish or old houses... I have none of that crap and house price fluctuations don't bother me , they have to drop 60% before I start getting a bit worried - and that is one of your wet dreams which will never happen...:)

I just remembered you and laughed when I looked at my KS returns in the last 12 months ... 15.6% net after fees and tax. ... Damn I should have taken your advice and put that in TD eh?

So down on your knees RP, join the other noobs who support you and pray for disasters ... maybe PT or someone will listen to you one day ... lol

And, meanwhile keep believing the BS propaganda of your MATES in power , keep assuming nonsense and build on bouncing BS with your mates, make a mountain out of a molehill and see what you get...haha

Oh , did you read this :

Perfect analogy ...

The Oozlum Bird - a relative? Appears to display similar traits!

'The oozlum bird, also spelled ouzelum, is a legendary creature found in Australian and British folk tales and legends. Some versions have it that, when startled, the bird will take off and fly around in ever-decreasing circles until it manages to fly up its own backside, disappearing completely, which adds to its rarity.[1] Other sources state that the bird flies backwards so that it can admire its own beautiful tail feathers, or because while it does not know where it is going, it likes to know where it has been.'

How many bottles of single malt do you consume in a day?? Do you say the word KB and take another sip

Eco Bird, is a Nanny Herald "the communists are coming" conspiracy theory all there's left for you? Now you're really scraping the barrel! All you were tasked with was finding evidence Auckland market is rising and business hiring intentions were on the up - (chuckle)

Definitely agree that rental subsidies aren't doing renters any favors. Edit- I mean landlord subsidies.

Exactly Bobster, the amount of Uber drivers I chat to who say they're getting their citizenship and heading to Australia is really high. It would be an interesting exercise to put a box on the immigration card that states country of birth, countries of citizenship.

Yes, it has been like this for many years...

Mmm, I can understand why the aussies are so dark about it. Reciprocal quasicitizen rights makes no sense unless you have broadly the same immigration schemes

Based on immigration loopholes, do you think the Aussies will be looking at a similar Brexit type arrangement???? :) :)

Interesting numbers from yesterday's Australian unemployment report. The Aussie economy added a net of roughly 117k jobs in the first half of this year, which equates to about 1% of their total workforce. However while the workforce participation rate remained constant, the unemployment rate also was largely unaffected by all these new jobs created.

Another stat shows that more than 2/3rds of all newly created jobs as a boost to the economy of migration are taken up by yet more migrants.

they are also talking about there numbers and reducing them
, at the moment they let in 250K or about 1% of the population
meanwhile we let in at our peak nearly double that

"An exclusive Newspoll conducted for The Australian has revealed that 56% ... believe the existing immigration cap of 190,000 a year is too high, ..".

The other 44% being 'Aussies' who still want to get family members into the Country.

the quoted "westpac Senior Economist' proposes that the better weather is the drawcard - but i would tend to agree with your theory

Myth: The 60-70k plus annual net migration in the last few years has helped ease skill shortages in NZ, particularly in the ICT sector.

Fact: The Digital Skills Forum study found the ICT sector employed 120,350 people in 2016 when it created 14,000 jobs, but only 5,090 graduates entered the industry the previous year and only 5,050 visas were granted to immigrants with technology skills, it said.

Reality: The Wellington office of a global consulting firm had hundreds of recent migrants apply for a BD/admin role advertised but a handful of majorly local candidates applied for a couple of data science roles.

You need to be sent to a re-education camp. Your views are not in alignment with the government nor big business.

You need to learn that unlimited, untested immigration of anyone and everyone is universally good for NZ. Regardless of immigrants origination, english language skills or anything else.

Say after me: More is better!

Is this an indication of less people wanting to come here because of this governments policies?

Eco Bird, is that you??!!

He's out twitching and chirping

Having displayed some interesting characteristics over the last few months I have decided that Ecobird is in fact the very rare 'Oozlum' bird.

Nice one, best in ages

Hahahaha ... the "hopeless case" has now turned to hallucination stage ... hearing voices and seeing ghosts ....hahahaahah
that could be the result of watching too much property and migration porn .. lol

ICT is an almost meaningless term. I worked in IT for 50 years in four different countries and everywhere was the same - a wildly varied range of abilities and capabilities. The nearest equivalent I can find is "local council employee" - covering brilliant librarians, energetic street sweepers, our Mayor's staff and the dog catchers. Engineer is much the same in the UK covering some superb creative people who ably administer billion dollar projects to almost anyone wearing overalls and digging trenches.
No way any survey can make sense of 'skill shortages' other than by who is willing to pay what. BTW the best programmer/analyst I met in my short time programming in NZ was an Indian immigrant and I expect and certainly hope he is earning roughly doubly national average wage (say $120k) because he is certainly well worth it. Pity our dept of Immigration lets in immigrants who can barely fix a mobile phone and calls them 'skilled ICT professionals'; a pity for our economy and a slap in the face for the talented immigrant programmers from whereever.

I agree. The vagueness of these loosely-thrown around labels make it easier for businesses to use migration to depress wages. I have met accountants with CPAs and MS degrees who bolted to their chairs all day, doing journal entries; others with high school diplomas who build good business cases, assist various teams in making better financial decisions and front-run capital issuance. Unfortunately, an immigration officer is more likely to prioritise the former's application over the latter's, same goes for an HR rep.
But you are right in saying that the truly skilled will eventually cut through this crappy system and make it big one way or the other.

True the skilled almost always rise to the top. But this is a serious matter: low wage immigration is a disaster. Reputable liberal economists such as Paul Krugman and Herman Daly tell us what is self-evident: an immigrant who is willing to take a 3rd world wage takes jobs from the already poor and reduces the average wage for those who do keep their jobs.
27% of permanent residents are primary applicants in the skilled category; Ok that leaves 72% who are variable - it includes children and pensioners and wives/husbands and refugees and even my wife who is far more talented than myself and has earned far more but got her residency as being my partner. We need INZ to enforce immigration as high waged and high skilled - if I was earning over $100,000 I wouldn't be sending my partner and children to be working on the supermarket checkout or in the nearest fast food outlet.

Exactly Lapun. And I would bring in one more consideration in that when starting an employee attitude beats ability hands down. In other words one with good attitude will quickly acquire the ability and undoubtedly grow more, whilst a bad attitude coupled to high qualifications can be diabolical as the identity will invariably use that ability to play the system for self benefit.

Well in North Shore Auckland the low wage immigrant (I hardly meet anything else) is typically good on attitude - they are keen to have and hold their job (well at least until they get permanent residency and move on up). With one exception (a really nasty Asian immigrant bossing his subordinate as they put in fibre - any self-respecting Kiwi would have punched him) low wage immigrants near me are great people with great work ethic - however when my adult children are looking for work (pizza sales, retail, etc) I really don't want them competing with docile candidates for residency on minimum wages.
It is important for NZ not to end up with a layer of low paid jobs that are immigrant only. And it is important we don't encourage exploitation of immigrants because they only have low level skills - there have been two court cases in my local neighbourhood where conditions were scandalous (under $3 per hour for example); how many escape prosecution by threatening their staff with losing their visa.

Correct. We appreciate the good attitude immigrants bring in NZ but we also want good skills to go with it.
Allowing anyone and everyone to settle in New Zealand in exchange for a year's tuition fee generally puts off our international reputation as a low-skilled nation.
Secondly, the current visa settings has provided our unproductive industries with an economic stimulus, only sustainable while they continue to have access to a steady flow of vulnerable workers from third-world countries.
Also, the cost efficiencies of these industries from the low-wage stimulus have boosted their returns and have allowed them to expand their operations to a point where huge capital commitments are needed from the public purse to grow our economic capacity (housing, tourism, transport, commercial complex etc.).

We should do what Asian countries do - have low skilled workers on a different visa. Lower minimum wage, less work rights, and no path to permanent residency. Goods and services would become cheaper to every day kiwis, and the middle class would be able to afford maids.

Here's some reading:

I believe Taiwan, Hong Kong and possibly South Korea all have similar policies.


Not the egalitarian country I want to live in and have my children grow up in. You only have to open the newspaper at the 'adult entertainment' section to discover the kind of work some recent immigrants are doing. Nobody at Dept of Immigration has the balls to sort it out.

Yeah my mate met a Chinese hooker, fell in love with her, tried to get her so many different visas she ended up overstaying and getting deported. I LOL'd so hard when he went chasing her to China. You could tell she was just using him.

“C” struck! Most devasting humiliating & soul destroying affliction any many man could ever suffer.

Egalitarianism and mass migration don't mix. We're seeing that right now.

Let's at least get a good deal out of it!

that would be under the skilled migrant category wouldn't it?

Yes but it would also break visa requirements. Although they could probably do better with roles reclassed in the natural health therapist category.

Are you joking saving for aus?that sounds like a form of slavery!!!imagine you immigrated to oz and were treated like that!

Are you telling me Asian countries practice slavery?

If they did would that make it ok for you us to do to them?

No. Now are you going to answer my question?

Also, I'm not going to Australia to do work for less than an Australian would.

Yeah I agree that there are country's using a form of slavery but I don't think we should do it.

You are getting it wrong. In these Asian countries, there are 2 categories of visas - immigration and non-immigration.
The same regulations around minimum wages, worker rights etc. apply to workers on either of the categories, but a person has to be on an immigration category visa to be able to apply for their permanent residency or bring dependents to the host nation. In all essence, the non-immigration is for temporary need-based, low skilled employment. Most NZ employers exploit their Asian employees in the name of residence sponsorship. With that "carrot and stick" out of the question, the worker isn't out of pocket by tens of thousands in student fees and is less vulnerable to exploitation.

The host country benefits from non-immigration category by bringing in more workers when needed with fewer visa processing requirements and without having to move those workers on to public benefits who are not needed in the long run.
The non-immigrant workers can get higher wages in the host country with easier visa requirements. South Asian workers, majorly low-skilled ones, remit about $100 billion a year in savings back to their families from overseas.
The government's proposed Kiwibuild visa was similar to the non-immigrant category visa.

Add Singapore and Arabia to that list. It is one way to prevent economic takeover via migratory invasion as ended up occurring in Fiji, and New Zealand (iwi position at least). NZ could very easily become a satellite of either India or China if just one third of one percent of their populations arrived in NZ.

Add Singapore and Arabia to that list.

Singapore was at the very top of my list! Read the post ;)

Areas where those same maids have often been abused & treated worse than the family pets, like slaves.


"Labour won't do anything to reduce immigration"

"Labour aren't doing anything to reduce immigration"

Lowest migration gain, annual net migration is heading south

"People don't want to come here because of Labour's policies"

"House prices won't drop because people do want to live here"

Not so sure. Lees-Galloway actually seems to be concerned by exploitation and rorts but very cautious in fixing them. He has a terrible bureaucracy to deal with and seems to be taking time to get some kind of control. I think he is more scared of his own Labour extremists than he is of being criticized by the vested interests in immigration. However he may just save Labour and get them re-elected - don't think any other Labour minister can say that.

It could also be the "Winnie effect"
Resident visa processing increased across nearly all types in May 2018. E.g. Partner visa for NZ citizen went from 3-4 months to 9-12 months. You are now number 3000 in the queue.

Thanks for the info. You may have noticed I am very skeptical of high immigration and strongly against low wage immigration but NZ does need immigrants - a smaller number of really talented people and we ought to be making it far easier for them - say $200,000 held in escrow; immediate visa processing; lose the money if you lied. Arbitrary delays mean the good go elsewhere and the crap sticks it out.

Yeah we do need to import highly skilled talented immigrants, because training up highly skilled talented people here just costs too much.

In an attempt to negate the costs of training up highly skilled people, the government tried getting those who aspire to be trained in highly skilled roles to fund their own education. Now that it's not working 100%, lets import these highly skilled people instead.

Training is hard but not impossible - govt should be encouraging it rather than degrees in communications & business. However training plus 5 years experience is harder - takes at least 5 years - so lets have an immigrant brain surgeon or lecturer in the latest robotics language just not another uber driver.

That migrant uber driver may well be a lecturer or brain surgeon.

Could the "Uber" model be applied to brain surgery?

If some employer has paid NZ govt say $200,000 for a work visa then I don't mind if the surgeon prefers to be a low taxpaying Uber driver. However it would be good to have some genuine stats about the wage distribution of immigrants - until we do I will assume maybe half of our immigrants benefit the NZ economy and the other half are a drag on both the economy and on wages.


My last Indian über driver was the chatty type. I got his life history. Entered NZ on a skilled visa category. He is an aluminium fabricator (120K on the job seekers benefit and employers can't find people to make windows) who supplements his income by cab driving. A good dude, married to a hard working woman. The sort of ambitious people our society needs more of. I asked if they will stay in NZ and got an ironic chuckle in response - not a chance. Aussie is and always was the goal, NZ just a vehicle to get there.

I know, its tragic but it's my experience also. All the best migrants I have met are playing the long game: one partner (either wife or husband) gets citizenship then its a one way ticket to Aus.

The big question is how will this affect NZ citizens wanting to move to Aus in the future. Its only a matter of time before serious changes to the special category visa we currently enjoy play out.

Interesting ; so he is NOT doing aluminium fabrication job ?? or uber is his secondary job ?

WAS doing fabrication and also supplementing with uber driving but not presently. Wife is completing a degree so he child minds when she is studying and works uber around her lectures etc. He was appreciative of the opportunity to come here and likes the country although is puzzled as to why we would pay people who opt to not work as a lifestyle choice. A smart and pleasant guy but you could tell he thinks we are naive.

Being disabled or elderly is not a lifestyle "choice". If you like you can have the disabilities and torturous pain many disabled on benefits have. I am sure you would see the difference after having your breakfast fed through a tube direct to your stomach, a colostomy bag break and not having any accessible bathroom to get to when you need it. WINZ does not even support the disabled to live independently or find housing. Most cannot get private rentals and often many lose their homes before WINZ ever supports them. At best they can hope for a starvation income with a state home, but there are no accessible rentals available and certainly no state homes available for the disabled now. Moved a couple into a garage where they could not access a toilet as that was literally the only option available to them after losing their home (genetic disability MD with wife working as full time carer with no income, govt removed any legal support for carers then and now they are legally paid $0/hr whereas an untrained immigrant home 'help' would get $19/hr even if they were a no show or could not do any care for the guy, both were trained engineers but with no living or transport support they could not work). Trust me being able to get the opportunity to work & access a home with a toilet is far better then the alternative.


People move to NZ expecting some kind of paradise but after a few years realise it’s just two small islands with high costs, low wages, terrible weather and smug untraveled quaint locals who think NZ is somehow important.

Don’t you know. NZ looks at the world from afar through a pair of binoculars, held back to front.

Licensed buffet restaurant, 60 seats. Easy running birthday party or other functions. The restaurant can help staff to get work visa and PR. The reason to Uuuu the business is the owner is moving and won’t back to Rotoua.

I'm sure this is not a scam eh!

I've been in Europe for 5 weeks now and I am surprised how few asian people live here.

Chinese immigrants are more attracted to English speaking countries, especially New World type countries including Australia and New Zealand. Countries that are fresher and developing a modern liberal culture.

It makes sense when you think about it with English being the most common language being learnt in China and there being quite a selection of suitable countries to emigrate to.

Now they have become very established in these regions with considerable ethnic facilities it only makes them even more attractive.

We are definitely the back door to Oz for most of the immigrants here. I grew up with several fijian indian and other asian immigrants families that arrived in the 90's, they have all moved to Oz with their families, NZ was only ever the stepping stone. I wonder if they might sponser me into Oz?

Days to the General Election: 20
See Party Policies here. Party Lists here.