Stats NZ released the latest monthly migration stats today. The charts below use their data. These charts are of New Zealand citizens only. So it is not about people moving here as migrants on work or student visas. It is purely about people who are New Zealand citizens and what they have been choosing to do – live in New Zealand, or live elsewhere.
With developed countries, migration of citizens almost always is strongly from smaller countries (actually cities) to larger ones. Kiwis move from Auckland to Sydney. Aussies move from Sydney to London. Poms move from London to New York etc.
So how many Kiwis are leaving, and have been leaving?
So under Labour the number of Kiwis leaving increased in their last five years from 40,000 to 60,000. It is now almost half that, at just over 30,000.
Now nothing wrong with Kiwis leaving to do their OE etc. But it is nice to have them back. So have they been returning?
So under Labour the number of Kiwis returning dropped from 28,000 to around 23,000. Since then it has increased to around 33,000. Around 10,000 more Kiwis a year are returning home.
What does this mean for net migration of New Zealand citizens?
In 2004 we were losing a net 10,000 citizens a year and by the end of 2008 it was almost 40,000 citizens a year net loss. That is around 750 week or over 100 a day.
Today the annual net loss is around 1,000 a year or 20 a week or 3 a day.
Again this is just New Zealand citizens.
That is a huge turnaround. And even bigger when you consider the cumulative sums.
In the last three years of Labour, the net loss of New Zealand citizens was 93,630.
In the last three years of National, the net loss of New Zealand citizens was just 9,530.