Immigration to New Zealand down by 66 percent

23 September 2005

The number of new immigrants to New Zealand, or New Zealanders returning home in the year ending August fell 66 per cent compared to the previous year, Statistics New Zealand said today.

For the year ending in August, there were 78,900 permanent long term (PLT) arrivals. This figure is a decrease of 3,600 or 4 percent compared to the previous August year.

PLT departures, meanwhile, rose 9,100 or 14 percent to 72,300.

This led to a net migration gain of 6,600 in the August year, 66 percent lower than the 19,300 people in the previous August year.

Permanent and long-term (PLT) arrivals include people who arrive in New Zealand intending to stay for at least 12 months.

PLT departures include New Zealanders departing for a period of at least 12 months as well as long term departures by permanent residents and foreign visitors who have been in the country for more than a year.

For the August year foreign arrivals were down 2300 and departures by foreign PLT's were up 2200.

There were 1300 fewer New Zealand citizens arriving back permanently compared to the year-earlier and 6900 more New Zealand citizens leaving on a long term basis.

For the month of August there were 600 more PLT arrivals than departures in August, compared with 900 more arrivals than departures the same time last year.

Australia remains the destination of choice for New Zealanders leaving home on a long term basis. There was a net outflow to Australia in August, with 1600 more New Zealanders moving across the Tasman than returning home.

By contrast there was a net inflow from Britain for the month of 900 more long term arrivals than people leaving.

Earlier this year, New Zealand was voted the 10th favorite nation in a world-wide poll.