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Visitor Arrivals Up 20 Percent

Visitor Arrivals Up 20 Percent

There were 134,800 short-term overseas visitor arrivals to New Zealand in June 2004, up 22,800 or 20 percent on June 2003, according to Statistics New Zealand.

In June 2004, there were more visitors from Australia (up 11,800 or 27 percent), Japan (up 3,600 or 82 percent) and China (up 3,100 or 184 percent) than in June 2003. Visitor arrivals from countries in Asia dropped from 30,600 in June 2002 to 22,800 in June 2003, as a response to the SARS virus. They returned to the 2002 level in June 2004 (30,700).

In the year ended June 2004, there were 2.250 million visitor arrivals, up 199,900 (10 percent) on the June 2003 year. There were more visitors from Australia (up 126,700), the United Kingdom (up 28,400), Korea (up 7,200), Malaysia (up 5,500) and the United States (up 5,000), but fewer visitors from Taiwan (down 2,600), Japan (down 2,500) and Italy (down 2,000), compared with the year ended June 2003.

Seasonally adjusted monthly visitor arrivals rose by 3 percent in June 2004, following a fall of 1 percent in May 2004.

New Zealand residents departed on 169,000 short-term overseas trips in June 2004, an increase of 47,100 (39 percent) on June 2003. This is the first time that monthly departures have exceeded 150,000. There were more trips to Australia (up 16,000 or 27 percent), China (up 3,400 or 199 percent), Fiji (up 3,000 or 37 percent) and the United States (up 2,700 or 42 percent). In the year ended June 2004, New Zealand resident short-term departures numbered 1.548 million, up 21 percent on the year ended June 2003.

Permanent and long-term (PLT) departures exceeded arrivals by 100 in June 2004, compared with an excess of 1,900 PLT arrivals over departures in June 2003. The June 2004 net PLT outflow can be attributed to 900 fewer PLT arrivals and 1,100 more PLT departures. The main reason for the drop in PLT arrivals was a fall in non-New Zealand citizen arrivals (down 600). The seasonally adjusted series recorded a net PLT inflow of 800 in June 2004, down from 1,400 in May 2004.

In the year ended June 2004, there was a net PLT migration gain of 22,000. This is 48 percent lower than the net inflow of 42,500 people in the previous June year. This resulted from 84,300 PLT arrivals (down 13,000), and 62,300 PLT departures (up 7,600) in the June 2004 year.

Compared with the June 2003 year, there were 400 fewer New Zealand citizen arrivals, and 3,200 more New Zealand citizen departures. Non-New Zealand citizen arrivals were down 12,600 and non-New Zealand citizen departures were up 4,400.

In the year ended June 2004, there was a net PLT inflow of 9,400 from the United Kingdom, up 12 percent on the June 2003 year figure (8,500). There was also a net inflow from China of 5,600, down from 14,800 in the June 2003 year. Overall, net PLT inflow from Asia has reduced considerably, from 31,000 in the June 2003 year, to 14,400 in the June 2004 year.

Conversely, there was a net outflow to Australia of 12,400 in the June 2004 year. A new migration processing system, incorporating the scanning of cards and image recognition, was used to process the arrival and departure cards for June 2004. It is expected that data captured using the new system will be largely consistent with previous data. Users need to be aware of the processing system changes when comparing data for June 2004 onwards with data for earlier periods.

Brian Pink

Government Statistician

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