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Annual net migration down to 71,000
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  20 October 2017

International Travel and Migration: September 2017  –  Media Release

Annual net migration was 71,000 in the September 2017 year, Stats NZ said today. Migrant arrivals were 131,600 and migrant departures were 60,600.

"The annual net migration in September 2017 was lower than the record annual net migration of 72,400 reached in the July 2017 year," population statistics senior manager Peter Dolan said. "Compared to this peak, we had fewer arrivals and more departures in the September 2017 year."

In the year ended September 2017, net migration was mostly driven by non-New Zealand citizens, who provided New Zealand with a net gain of 72,600 migrants. Migration of New Zealand citizens saw a net loss of 1,600 migrants.

Chart, Permanent and long-term migration, year ended September 2017.

Both arrivals and departures of non-New Zealand citizens were up from a year ago. Arrivals of non-New Zealand citizens increased from 94,400 in the September 2016 year to 99,600 in the September 2017 year. Departures of non-New Zealand citizens increased from 22,300 to 27,000 over the same period.

Net migration was 6,800 in September 2017, down from 7,900 in September 2016. Migrant arrivals were 11,100 and migrant departures were 4,300 in September 2017. The drop in net migration in September 2017 was due to both the decrease in migrant arrivals (down 600) and the increase in migrant departures (up 500). 

Short-term travellers or migrants?

International migration statistics rely on the information provided on passenger cards at the time of travel. The reported intended length of stay in New Zealand, or intended time away from New Zealand, largely determines whether the passenger is a short-term traveller or a migrant. Generally, visitor arrivals and resident departures are those intending to stay or be away for less than one year; migrants are those intending to stay or be away for one year or more.

See also: Record-breaking 3.7 million visitors to New Zealand – media release

Ends

For media enquiries contact: Kim Dunstan 03 964 8330, or James Weir 021 285 9191; info@stats.govt.nz
Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 20 October 2017

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