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Record Monthly Visitor Arrivals

External Migration: December 2004 4 February 2005

Record Monthly Visitor Arrivals

There was a record monthly total of 313,100 short-term overseas visitor arrivals to New Zealand in December 2004, Statistics New Zealand said today. This surpasses the previous monthly high of 297,300 in December 2003. Visitor arrivals in December 2004 were up 15,800 (5 percent) on December 2003. In December 2004, there were more visitors from Australia (up 18,100 or 18 percent), the United Kingdom (up 1,900 or 4 percent) and Tonga (up 800 or 49 percent) than in December 2003.

The number of stay days for all visitor arrivals in December 2004 was up 4 percent on December 2003, from 6.48 million days to 6.76 million days. The average length of stay was 22 days in both December 2004 and December 2003. In the year ended December 2004, there were 2.348 million visitor arrivals, up 241,400 (11 percent) on the December 2003 year. There were more visitors from Australia (up 153,800), the United Kingdom (up 18,900), China (up 18,400), Japan (up 14,200) and the United States (up 6,700), compared with the year ended December 2003.

Seasonally adjusted monthly visitor arrivals were up 3 percent in December 2004, following a fall of 2 percent in November 2004. New Zealand residents departed on 173,700 short-term overseas trips in December 2004, an increase of 25,800 (17 percent) on December 2003. There were more trips to Australia (up 13,100 or 19 percent), Fiji (up 2,300 or 49 percent), the Cook Islands (up 1,100 or 56 percent) and Samoa (up 900 or 33 percent).

In the year ended December 2004, New Zealand resident short-term departures numbered 1.733 million, up 26 percent on the 1.374 million recorded in the year ended December 2003. Permanent and long-term (PLT) arrivals exceeded departures by 300 in December 2004, compared with an excess of 1,600 in December 2003. The decrease in December 2004 resulted from 400 fewer PLT arrivals and 800 more PLT departures. New Zealand citizen arrivals decreased by 400, while New Zealand citizen departures increased by 500.

The seasonally adjusted series recorded a net PLT inflow of 500 in December 2004, down from an inflow of 600 in November 2004. In the year ended December 2004, there was a net PLT migration gain of 15,100, down 57 percent on the net inflow of 34,900 people recorded in the previous December year. This resulted from 80,500 PLT arrivals (down 12,200), and 65,400 PLT departures (up 7,600) in the December 2004 year. Compared with the December 2003 year, non-New Zealand citizen arrivals were down 9,600 and non-New Zealand citizen departures were up 3,300.

There were 2,600 fewer New Zealand citizen arrivals and 4,300 more New Zealand citizen departures. In the year ended December 2004, there was a net PLT inflow of 9,000 from the United Kingdom, down 11 percent on the December 2003 year figure of 10,100. There was also a net inflow from China of 2,800, down from a net inflow of 11,300. Overall, net PLT inflow from Asia has reduced, from 23,800 in the December 2003 year to 9,800 in the December 2004 year. There was a net outflow to Australia of 14,700 in the December 2004 year. Ian Ewing Acting Government Statistician


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