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Waikato more diverse, following 2013 Census trend

Waikato more diverse, following 2013 Census trend – Media release

3 December 2013

The 2013 Census has found the Waikato is mirroring national trends of an increasingly diverse population.

The information was released today as part of the latest batch of census results from Statistics New Zealand.

Government Statistician Liz MacPherson said information from the 2013 Census shows the New Zealand population is growing more ethnically diverse, and that as a nation we have a lower rate of home ownership than in 2006, yet the number of dwellings has increased.

“Waikato reflects those trends. The 2013 Census results show that 17.9 percent of Waikato’s residents were born overseas. Of those people, 31.9 percent were born in the United Kingdom and Ireland, and 25.3 percent in Asia – 6.9 percent of the Waikato population recorded their ethnicity as Asian.

“That means Waikato has the third-highest percentage of Asian people by population in New Zealand – equal with Canterbury.” Over 1 in 5 people in Waikato indicated they are of Māori ethnicity, the fifth-highest percentage by region after Gisborne, Northland, Bay of Plenty, and Hawke’s Bay.

Other key points about Waikato from the 2013 Census results include:
• The Waikato region’s rate of home ownership was 62.7 percent in 2013, the third-lowest in New Zealand after the Gisborne and Auckland regions.
• The median income for people aged 15 years and over in the Waikato region is $27,900 in 2013. This compares with a New Zealand median income of $28,500. The median income for Waikato increased 15.8 percent since 2006.
• Of people aged 15 years and over in Waikato, 16 percent said they had a university degree or equivalent in the 2013 Census, compared with 12.3 percent in 2006.
• After Auckland, Waikato has the highest number of te reo Māori speakers, with over 21,000 people able to have a conversation in the language. Hindi has now overtaken French as the third (after English and Māori) most common language spoken, almost doubling to 3,855 speakers since 2006.

Ms MacPherson said the latest release of census information is keenly awaited by those planning for Waikato’s future. “The census is about identity and diversity. Information gathered from the 2013 Census is vital to New Zealand’s growth and prosperity. It will be used by government, councils, community groups, iwi, and businesses to plan for the future.”

For further information about the 2013 Census results please visit www.stats.govt.nz.

ENDS

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