Immigration numbers revised down

Using different and supposedly more accurate methods  Statistics NZ  has revised downwards the number immigrants who have stayed in New Zealand over the last few years. net immigration peaked at 64,000 in 2016 instead of the previous estimate of 72,500.

NZ Herald:  NZ has fewer people than we thought … so we don’t need to build so many houses

New Zealand’s immigration boom wasn’t as big as reported at the time, a major revision by Statistics NZ has found.

That means we’ll need to build fewer houses to meet the current shortage, says Westpac senior economist Satish Ranchhod.

The new, more accurate data shows there’s fewer people in New Zealand than we thought and that has major implications for the economic outlook, he says.

Net migration peaked at 64,000 in mid-2016, not 72,500 in 2017, according to revised figures.

It is now tracking at 43,000 – about 20,000 fewer migrants a year than previously thought.

That means we’ll need to build fewer houses to meet the current shortage, says Westpac senior economist Satish Ranchhod.

Stats NZ has revised the figures based on new research about how many of our new long-term arrivals actually stay in the country.

The previous data was based on the intended length of stay, as recorded on immigration forms by long-term migrants when they arrived at the border.

But it turns out more migrants decide not to stick around than we thought.

That’s particularly true for those in the 20-29 age bracket, which includes a large proportion of international students.

Population figures are due later this month which will be lower than previous estimates.

Ranchhod estimates the rate of population growth hit two per cent in 2016 and has slowed to 1.5 per cent.

This will have an impact on housing needs estimates.

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