New Zealand net migration levels slow

New Zealand annual net migration was unchanged in November from a year earlier, as fewer New Zealanders left while net foreign migration decreased.

Annual net migration was at 70,400 in the year to November, the same as November 2016, Statistics New Zealand said. The figures show that net 71,700 non-citizens arrived in the year, down from 72,300 a year earlier, while a net 1,300 New Zealanders left, from 1,900 a year earlier.

New Zealand had been experiencing record levels of net migration in recent years. Net migration peaked at 72,400 in the July.

“The slowing of annual net migration was driven by record non-New Zealand citizen migrant departures,” population statistics senior manager Peter Dolan said. “There were 27,800 in the November 2017 year, compared with 22,900 in the November 2016 year.” More non-citizen migrants arrived in the latest year, at 99,500 from 95,100 a year earlier.

Chinese migration continued to be the largest on a net basis, with 9,500 of the 70,400 net arrivals coming from China, though that was down 7.9 per cent on a year earlier. India was the second-largest source at a net 6,800, though Indian net migration was down 25 per cent from a year earlier, with a 17 per cent drop in annual student visas granted to Indian citizens.

Net arrivals from Australia plummeted to 20 people in the latest year, from 1,800 a year earlier. US net migration jumped 50 per cent to 2,000 in the year, while UK net migration rose 20 per cent to 6,500.

China continued to be the biggest source of migrants on residence visas, though that dipped 7 per cent to 3,100 in the year, while the total number of residence visas dropped 4.7 per cent to 15,700.

There was a 12 per cent increase in work visas granted in the year, to 46,200, while student visa numbers dropped 2.5 per cent to 24,000.

Article published 20th December 2017