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Census Shows Accelerating Growth Across Country

6 December 200606

Census Shows Accelerating Growth Across the Country

Results from the 2006 Census show that New Zealand's usually resident population grew faster between 2001 and 2006 than in any five-year period between censuses in the last 30 years, Statistics New Zealand said today. In the five years to 2006, the population increased by 7.8 percent (to reach 4,027,947), compared with 3.3 percent between 1996 and 2001.

Census Shows Accelerating Growth Across the Country

Results from the 2006 Census show that New Zealand's usually resident population grew faster between 2001 and 2006 than in any five-year period between censuses in the last 30 years, Statistics New Zealand said today. In the five years to 2006, the population increased by 7.8 percent (to reach 4,027,947), compared with 3.3 percent between 1996 and 2001.

All regional council areas showed population growth or had steady populations between 2001 and 2006, except for Southland which had a marginal decline. This contrasts with the previous five years (1996–2001) when six regional council areas showed population decline. The biggest increases between 2001 and 2006 were in the Auckland (up 12.4 percent) and Canterbury (up 8.4 percent) regions.

New Zealand's private occupied dwelling count also increased, from 1,359,843 in March 2001 to 1,471,746 in March 2006. Two-thirds of private occupied dwellings were either owned by the household (54.5 percent) or held in a family trust (12.3 percent). The remaining third (33.1 percent) were not owned by the household. In 2001, 32.2 percent of private occupied dwellings were not owned by the household.

Significant changes in New Zealand's ethnic make-up included growth for Māori (up 7.4 percent since 2001 to reach 565,329) and Pacific peoples (up 14.7 percent since 2001 to reach 265,974). The Asian ethnic group had the biggest growth since 2001, up 48.9 percent to reach 354,552. The Asian ethnic group now represents 9.2 percent of those who stated their ethnicity.

'New Zealander' is published as a separate category for the first time in 2006, after previously being counted in the European category. This ethnic group totalled 429,429 (11.1 percent) in 2006. European remains the largest of the major ethnic groups, totalling 2,609,592 (67.6 percent) in 2006.

Other interesting trends include Internet and cellphone availability. Internet availability in households nearly doubled between 2001 and 2006 – from 37.4 percent to 60.5 percent. The 2006 Census was the first to ask about the availability of cellphones in households – 74.2 percent of households had access to cellphones.

For the first time, Statistics New Zealand has released summary census results on New Zealand's population and dwellings in the same year as the census took place. Results include information about the characteristics of New Zealand's population and dwellings, as well as regional data. More detailed information will follow in early 2007.

Brian Pink, Government Statistician, thanked people for their participation in the census, "every census adds to our understanding of our country and people. The 2006 Census shows how New Zealand is changing significantly and indicates where we are headed as a nation."

A range of information from the 2006 Census is available on the Statistics New Zealand website at www.stats.govt.nz.

Brian Pink
Government Statistician

ENDS

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