New Zealand's May migration gain greatest since Oct. 2004

21 June 2005

New Zealand had a seasonally adjusted long-term and permanent migration net gain of 780 people in May, the biggest in seven months according to official data on 21 June. The net migration gain compared with the previous month's gain of 530 people, revised from an original 510. The seasonally adjusted monthly gain was the highest since October 2004.

On an actual, unadjusted basis, departures exceeded arrivals by 1,140, compared with a loss of 590 a year earlier, the government agency said.

For the year ending May 31, there was a net gain in permanent and long-term migration of 8,800, down 63 percent on the net inflow of 24,000 people in the previous year ended May.

Net annual migration gains, a key driver of the strong domestic economy, have been falling since the peak of 42,500 in the year to May 2003, because of tighter immigration rules, a reduction in the number of foreign students studying in New Zealand, fewer New Zealanders returning home and more New Zealanders moving overseas.