NZ migration continues to hit record levels

Recent figures show that New Zealand’s net gain of migrants has risen at a record level for the 22nd consecutive month.

The latest official figures show that New Zealand received a net gain of 68,400 people in the year to May. On a monthly basis, the number of people coming to live in the country, or return home, held steady at 5,500. Migration had peaked at 6,200 in November last year.

According to Phil Borkin, a Senior Economist at ANZ Bank, the net-migration numbers are likely to stay high for the foreseeable future, especially while Australia’s economy continues to struggle (Australia is traditionally the main emigration destination for NZ immigrants).

“The New Zealand economy is still performing very well. There’s some possibilities that migration turns south – the biggest factor there would be if the Australian economy started to show stronger signs of growth, particularly in the labour market, but we don’t have that at the moment,” he said.

It’s not just immigrant arrival numbers that are growing. A total of 193,600 visitors arrived in NZ last month, up 10 per cent from May 2015, setting a new May record.

The number of visitors from China, the UK and India showed significant increases, with Chinese visitors outnumbering Australian visitors for only the second time ever.