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Annual net migration down 7,400 from peak in 2017

Annual net migration down 7,400 from peak in 2017 – Media release

20 July 2018

Annual net migration eased slightly to 65,000 in the June 2018 year, as fewer migrants arrived and more left, Stats NZ said today.

Migrant arrivals were 129,500 and migrant departures were 64,500.

Annual net migration for the June 2018 year was down 7,400 from a record high of 72,400 in the July 2017 year.

“An increase in migrants leaving, particularly non-New Zealand citizens, continued to be the key factor in lower annual net migration,” acting population insights senior manager Michelle Feyen said.

“A decrease in migrant arrivals also contributed, but net migration still remains high by historical standards.”

In the June 2018 year, non-New Zealand citizen migrant departures were up 21 percent from a year ago to 30,900, and up 1.2 percent from the May 2018 year.

Migrant arrivals dipped below 130,000 for the first time since the April 2017 year. Both New Zealand and non-New Zealand citizen migrant arrivals decreased for the June 2018 year.

More New Zealand citizens are leaving the country long term than returning. In the year ended June 2018, there was a net loss of 1,800 New Zealand citizens, partly offsetting the net gain of 66,800 non-New Zealand citizens.

New online tool

Tourism and migration data visualiser is Stats NZ’s new online tool for tourism and migration figures. Use this tool to easily create simple graphs showing international travel trends.

Estimating migration – classifying border crossings with incomplete travel histories

In the near future, Stats NZ will use an outcomes-based measure to formally measure migration. An outcomes-based measure is more accurate than the current intentions-based measure (see Outcomes versus intentions: Measuring migration based on travel histories). However, the outcomes-based measure requires 16 months of complete border-crossing information, resulting in a 17-month lag before final estimates can be released. Stats NZ is working towards producing a provisional measure of migration that will ensure a timelier statistic.

Results from work so far show that most border crossings can be classified before 16 months are up. The remaining records can be classified (to short-term visitor, short-term New Zealand resident traveller, or long-term migrant) based on other variables such as age, sex, visa type, and citizenship. This estimation has the potential to change so provisional data will be published with uncertainty intervals, and will be subject to revision as the outcomes of travellers become more certain.

First results of the provisional estimation are expected to be published from late August. For further information, please contact demography@stats.govt.nz

Ends

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