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Visitor Arrivals Up 9 Percent

21 October 2004

External Migration: September 2004 — Visitor Arrivals Up 9 Percent

There were 161,200 short-term overseas visitor arrivals to New Zealand in September 2004, an increase of 12,800 (9 percent) on September 2003, according to Statistics New Zealand. In September 2004, there were more visitors from Australia (up 12,900 or 20 percent), the United States (up 1,100 or 11 percent) and China (up 900 or 16 percent) than in September 2003.

The number of stay days for all visitor arrivals in September 2004 was up 1 percent on September 2003, from 2.99 million days to 3.03 million days. The average length of stay was 19 days in September 2004, compared with 20 days in September 2003.

In the year ended September 2004, there were 2.307 million visitor arrivals, an increase of a quarter of a million (249,400) or 12 percent on the September 2003 year. There were more visitors from Australia (up 153,200), the United Kingdom (up 24,000), China (up 15,300), the United States (up 9,100) and Japan (up 8,300) compared with the year ended September 2003. Seasonally adjusted monthly visitor arrivals were up 1 percent from August 2004 to September 2004, following a fall of less than 1 percent in the preceding month. New Zealand residents departed on 186,300 short-term overseas trips in September 2004, an increase of 36,800 (25 percent) on September 2003.

This is the largest monthly resident departures figure on record, surpassing the July 2004 figure (183,300). There were more trips to Australia (up 17,100 or 22 percent), Fiji (up 2,300 or 23 percent) and the United Kingdom (up 1,600 or 22 percent).

In the year ended September 2004, New Zealand resident short-term departures numbered 1.667 million, up 27 percent on the 1.318 million in the year ended September 2003.

Permanent and long-term (PLT) arrivals exceeded departures by 2,200 in September 2004, compared with 3,700 in September 2003. This decrease can be attributed to 700 fewer PLT arrivals and 900 more PLT departures. Non-New Zealand citizen arrivals decreased by 400, while New Zealand citizen departures increased by 600.

The seasonally adjusted series recorded a net PLT inflow of 700 in September 2004, down from 1,000 in August 2004. In the year ended September 2004, there was a net PLT migration gain of 17,800, down 56 percent on the net inflow of 40,400 people in the previous September year. This resulted from 81,800 PLT arrivals (down 13,700), and 64,100 PLT departures (up 9,000) in the September 2004 year.

Compared with the September 2003 year, non-New Zealand citizen arrivals were down 11,900 and non-New Zealand citizen departures were up 4,600. There were 1,900 fewer New Zealand citizen arrivals and 4,400 more New Zealand citizen departures. In the year ended September 2004, there was a net PLT inflow of 9,300 from the United Kingdom, down 3 percent on the September 2003 year figure of 9,600. There was also a net inflow from China of 3,700, down from 13,000 in the September 2003 year.

Overall, net PLT inflow from Asia has reduced considerably, from 27,800 in the September 2003 year to 11,600 in the September 2004 year. There was a net outflow to Australia of 13,600 in the September 2004 year.

Brian Pink Government Statistician


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