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The Queen and New Zealand – statistics through her reign
Embargoed until 12:00pm  –  01 June 2012

The Queen and New Zealand – statistics through her reign  –  Media Release

New Zealand’s population – both humans and cows – has more than doubled in the 60 years that Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne, but it seems the price of an electric kettle is a fraction of what it once was.

Statistics New Zealand has been delving into historical data from 1952 and comparing it with the latest information available.

Deputy Government Statistician Dallas Welch says New Zealand’s population has changed markedly.

“Back in 1952, New Zealand broke through the 2 million population barrier and 60 years on, that’s more than doubled to 4.4 million. Coincidentally, the number of dairy cows has also more than doubled from less than 3 million, to over 6 million.”

Mrs Welch said immigration patterns have also changed.

“When the Queen first took the throne, more than half of our immigrants came from the United Kingdom. Today that’s more like 17 percent, although in the past year, more people still moved here from the UK than from any other place.

“In trade, the Old Country used to contribute about two-thirds of our export earnings. Last year, 3 percent of our export earnings came from the UK.”

And as for making a nice cup of tea, in 1952 an electric kettle cost 59 shillings and 6 pence (about $164 in today’s terms) and a 1lb (500g) pack of tea was 6 shillings and 4 pence (about $16.60). Today a kettle costs about $44 on average, and a box of 100 teabags (about 200g of tea) costs about $4.46.

Below is a graphic showing changes in New Zealand over the past 60 years. This graphic is available in PDF format from the ‘Downloads’ box.

Queen's diamond jubilee 1952–2012: infographic

For more information about New Zealand in 1952, and other years back to 1893, see Statistics NZ’s digital yearbook collection at www.stats.govt.nz/yearbooks.

 Dallas Welch  31 May 2012 
 Deputy Government Statistician  

END

For media enquiries, or for a high resolution copy of the graphic, contact:
Colin Marshall
Senior Media Advisor
Wellington (04) 931 4630 or (021) 285 9191
Email: communication@stats.govt.nz

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